Tough diagnosis: Anyone else diagnosed with Recruitment?

Posted by Bill Gebhardt @billgebhardt, Aug 20, 2020

First step towards an implant is a little overwhelming. In the doctor’s words, albeit heavily edited.

“So, you have, what is called recruitment.
Well just the most important thing to know about a cochlear implant is that it’s not a quick fix. After surgery that ear is pretty much wiped out. So, you can’t really hear for about eight weeks until you’re activated with the implant.
… when the implant is turned on. you will not be able to understand speech for a couple of months. You will have the ability to understand environmental sounds, those will develop first with listening practice over 12 to 18 months you can develop speech, understanding. The reason this may be an option for you is that it goes through a different method of transmission. Right now, hearing aids are acoustic and implant is electrical stimulation to your nerve. If it’s at the level of the inner ear, that’s causing this recruitment. We’re essentially not going through there. For stimulation to the nerve electrically. So it’s possible we can get you access to what you’re missing through a different mode of stimulation.”

Anybody had a similar Dx?
Bill

For some odd reason, Cochlear™ was quite smitten with Apple despite their less than 25% of the market and focused their programming on iPhones. Recently they have tried to include the Androids, but it is still a crapshoot. More later. The learning curve on the N7 and my smartphone are both steep.

REPLY

It's really interesting Bill. I don't want to sound like a broken record, but I still use my very basic Williams Sound neckloop with my CI and my iPhone. I was implanted with the Freedom by Cochlear Corp. In 2005. It was brand new then, no streaming, but I was advised to get an iPhone, so gave up my android. Made no difference because the streaming was only on the 'wish list' then. Then, 8 years later when I upgraded to the N6, I was told to get a ReSound hearing aid that would be compatible with the accessories; phone clip, mini mic, etc. I had been using a Widex hearing aid for a long time, but I tried 5 different ReSound models. None of them worked as well for me as the Widex. So I stuck with the Widex aid as I am bimodal. I am eligible now to upgrade to the N7, but am not sure I want to as the N6 with the Widex works well for me when not using any accessories.

During all this time, I have depended on the telecoils in both the CI processor and the hearing aid I use. That dang neckloop is so simple, so inexpensive (think $60 from an audiologist, although I have bought a couple on Amazon for 1/2 that. It's good to have a couple so one is on hand when needed.) WIth the neckloop I can hear clear as a bell on my iPhone7.

Too many hearing healthcare professionals discount the value of the telecoil in hearing aids and CI processors. In my opinion, it is the simplest and easiest device to use. And, I can use it on so many things. Laptop, portable radio, cell phone, and most landlines, plus any other audio devices that have a plug in jack. It works in public facilities like performing arts centers, churches, meeting rooms, etc. if they have installed hearing loops. And they WILL install hearing loops if people advocate for them, ask for them and have enough information to educate them on how to go about it. We hard of hearing people deserve better than what we are getting. I grew tired of being offered a sign language interpreter when I asked for accommodations. I may as well have a Greek interpreter because I don't use ASL. ASL is a language all by itself. So, I learned about loops and telecoils and I started sharing information with other hard of hearing people. Together we advocated and educated and spoke up about our right to communication access. And, it worked wonders in our community and in our state (Wisconsin).

So, I go back to my initial query. Did the audiologist activate the telecoil in your CI processor? DId they explain to you how to use it. Did they demonstrate how to use it with an audio device. It's like having binoculars for your ears; seriously. While so much focus is on BlueTooth streaming these days, for many of us…especially the seniors who are not into the streaming gig, simplicity matters! I do not use the TV streamer or the phone clip with my N6. I do use the Mini Mic a lot in noisy social settings, and know I would do better with that if I had the ReSound aid so I could hear bilaterally with it. Maybe next round will work better. But, my reality is that the Widex aid does more for me than the Resounds did in settings when not using accessories. And, most of my time is not spent with the Mini MIc. I will have to make a decision on a new HA when I upgrade to the N7. I may wait until the N8. Regardless, I will insist that the processor and the hearing aid have an activated telecoil component.

The craziest thing ever right now, is that Cochlear has eliminated the telecoil in the off ear processor they released a short time ago. This has prevented many CI users who are 'in the know' from going that route. Two steps forward; one step backward. We, who use and need this technology must learn from each other and let the manufacturers and providers know that we are informed. All this eliminating of telecoils is related to the quest to make an invisible hearing device so 'no one will know you're wearing it'. Marketing denial and stigma as far as I'm concerned.

Hang in there. It will get easier and easier in time.

REPLY
@julieo4

It's really interesting Bill. I don't want to sound like a broken record, but I still use my very basic Williams Sound neckloop with my CI and my iPhone. I was implanted with the Freedom by Cochlear Corp. In 2005. It was brand new then, no streaming, but I was advised to get an iPhone, so gave up my android. Made no difference because the streaming was only on the 'wish list' then. Then, 8 years later when I upgraded to the N6, I was told to get a ReSound hearing aid that would be compatible with the accessories; phone clip, mini mic, etc. I had been using a Widex hearing aid for a long time, but I tried 5 different ReSound models. None of them worked as well for me as the Widex. So I stuck with the Widex aid as I am bimodal. I am eligible now to upgrade to the N7, but am not sure I want to as the N6 with the Widex works well for me when not using any accessories.

During all this time, I have depended on the telecoils in both the CI processor and the hearing aid I use. That dang neckloop is so simple, so inexpensive (think $60 from an audiologist, although I have bought a couple on Amazon for 1/2 that. It's good to have a couple so one is on hand when needed.) WIth the neckloop I can hear clear as a bell on my iPhone7.

Too many hearing healthcare professionals discount the value of the telecoil in hearing aids and CI processors. In my opinion, it is the simplest and easiest device to use. And, I can use it on so many things. Laptop, portable radio, cell phone, and most landlines, plus any other audio devices that have a plug in jack. It works in public facilities like performing arts centers, churches, meeting rooms, etc. if they have installed hearing loops. And they WILL install hearing loops if people advocate for them, ask for them and have enough information to educate them on how to go about it. We hard of hearing people deserve better than what we are getting. I grew tired of being offered a sign language interpreter when I asked for accommodations. I may as well have a Greek interpreter because I don't use ASL. ASL is a language all by itself. So, I learned about loops and telecoils and I started sharing information with other hard of hearing people. Together we advocated and educated and spoke up about our right to communication access. And, it worked wonders in our community and in our state (Wisconsin).

So, I go back to my initial query. Did the audiologist activate the telecoil in your CI processor? DId they explain to you how to use it. Did they demonstrate how to use it with an audio device. It's like having binoculars for your ears; seriously. While so much focus is on BlueTooth streaming these days, for many of us…especially the seniors who are not into the streaming gig, simplicity matters! I do not use the TV streamer or the phone clip with my N6. I do use the Mini Mic a lot in noisy social settings, and know I would do better with that if I had the ReSound aid so I could hear bilaterally with it. Maybe next round will work better. But, my reality is that the Widex aid does more for me than the Resounds did in settings when not using accessories. And, most of my time is not spent with the Mini MIc. I will have to make a decision on a new HA when I upgrade to the N7. I may wait until the N8. Regardless, I will insist that the processor and the hearing aid have an activated telecoil component.

The craziest thing ever right now, is that Cochlear has eliminated the telecoil in the off ear processor they released a short time ago. This has prevented many CI users who are 'in the know' from going that route. Two steps forward; one step backward. We, who use and need this technology must learn from each other and let the manufacturers and providers know that we are informed. All this eliminating of telecoils is related to the quest to make an invisible hearing device so 'no one will know you're wearing it'. Marketing denial and stigma as far as I'm concerned.

Hang in there. It will get easier and easier in time.

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No, he did not activate it because I am still struggling to sync directly with Bluetooth. All this is pushing my limited technical abilities. Google up N7 and telecoil and it seems that Telcoil is automatic, just push a button on the N7 and you are good to go. Maybe it is an option because it doesn't work on mine. Clarification: as I understand it, N7 is hooked on the ear, with Kanso there is nothing hanging on the ear. I chose "on the ear" because I am active in the shop and did not want to worry about it's going to the floor.

REPLY
@billgebhardt

No, he did not activate it because I am still struggling to sync directly with Bluetooth. All this is pushing my limited technical abilities. Google up N7 and telecoil and it seems that Telcoil is automatic, just push a button on the N7 and you are good to go. Maybe it is an option because it doesn't work on mine. Clarification: as I understand it, N7 is hooked on the ear, with Kanso there is nothing hanging on the ear. I chose "on the ear" because I am active in the shop and did not want to worry about it's going to the floor.

Jump to this post

Telecoil is automatically 'included' in the N7, and in all previous Cochlear processors. However, it has to be 'activated' within the processor, by the audiologist, to function; same with hearing aids that include telecoils. Yes, the Kanso is connected by magnet off the ear. The updated Kanso model, Kanso 2 does not have a telecoil. They took it out to add rechargeable batteries. It's a matter of space in the device. Many people are upset about that. Thankfully, they can choose the over the ear device.

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