At the end of 2014 Ros began to notice that something was wrong with her hearing. Then, at the age of fifty, her hearing disappeared completely.
In the beginning, Ros didn’t pay much notice to her hearing loss.
“I didn’t notice it too much as my left ear was still fine and whenever I used my iPod I used that ear,” said Ros. “As a customer service officer I worked on the phone but using two ear phones meant I could still hear.
“Then I lost all hearing in my right ear and, soon after, my left ear lost all hearing too. I had to stop work.”
Tests failed to find a reason for Ros’ hearing loss.
“I was referred to Ear Nose and Throat Surgeon, Dr Cathy Birman,” said Ros. “Cathy was wonderful and said I was in a good position to get my hearing back with a cochlear implant.”
Ros booked in with SCIC Cochlear Implant Program.
“My SCIC Cochlear Implant Program Audiologist, Rachel Attard, was so helpful. As I couldn’t hear, Rachel typed up everything for me. She gave me a complete explanation of what the implant was and what I could expect.
“All through this I had a lot of ups and downs. I wasn’t confident driving anymore, and social occasions were really hard. My daughter had her engagement party and people had to write things down – in a party setting that’s difficult. I spent most of the night just sitting around.”
Leading up to the surgery, Ros was nervous.
“I was not so much worried about the surgery itself but whether I would get my hearing back,” said Ros.
“Rachel was very positive and helped me feel better about the whole thing. She also organised for me to meet another cochlear implant recipient, so I could see what it looked like and talk to someone else about their experience.”
Ros is now looking forward to the future with her implant.
“I am over the moon with my implant,” said Ros. “I can now speak one on one with people and I’m really looking forward to my daughter’s wedding and getting back to work!”
SCIC Cochlear Implant Program supports clients to access a range of implantable hearing devices according to their needs. The program provides support for life with a seamless, end-to-end suite of services, from early intervention and education; through to specialist assessment; surgical liaison and support; and re/habilitation services, delivering the highest level of care and support to people of all ages.
With 17 sites across Australia, RIDBC enables you to access services from any one of our centres. For those in regional and remote locations, our advanced videoconferencing and device mapping technology enables us to deliver services directly into your home, no matter where you live.
For more information about cochlear implants or SCIC Cochlear Implant Program, visit ridbc.org.au/scic or call 1300 658 981.
RIDBC is Australia’s largest non-government provider of therapy, education and cochlear implant services for people with hearing or vision loss, supporting thousands of adults, children and their families, each year.
RIDBC relies heavily on fundraising and community support to be able to continue to make a difference in the lives of children and adults with vision or hearing loss.