MED-EL SONNET Rechargeable Battery Announcement

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As reported earlier on cochlear implant HELP, MED-EL announces FDA approval of rechargeable batteries for the SONNET processor, and also approval of the Mini Battery Pack for SONNET.

The rechargeable batteries will be available in a standard size with up to 10 hours of listening, or micro size, battery life not reported. The rechargeable batteries are compatible with WaterWear.

The Mini Battery Pack will house a single AAA battery in an off-ear configuration, with up to 37 hours of battery life.

MED-EL WaterWear for OPUS 2 and SONNET Coming Soon

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MED-EL announced that WaterWear covers for the OPUS 2 and SONNET processors will be available late summer 2016 in the United States. Note that Zinc-Air batteries do not work in an airtight environment, so most likely 675 LR44 button cells will need to be used in conjunction with WaterWear.

In related news, MED-EL also received FDA approval for a rechargeable battery for the SONNET processor, which may work in conjunction with the WaterWear, making 675 LR44 batteries unnecessary. Also, a Mini Battery Pack and Cable have been approved for the SONNET, which may be an off-ear power solution unrelated to WaterWear.

Spotify Playlist for Cochlear Implant Users

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May 9, 2016 – (DURHAM, NC) – In celebration of May’s Better Hearing and Speech month, hearing implant leader MED-EL announced the launch of their first-ever Spotify playlist designed specifically for cochlear implant users. Spotify is a desktop and mobile streaming music service that offers free and paid subscriptions. Cochlear implant (CI) users are invited to follow MED-EL on Spotify and share the MED-EL Music for Cochlear Implant playlist with friends and family.

Full press release

Video Series on Latest Cochlear Implant Research

MED-EL announces the launch of ‘Inside Story’, a series of broadcast-quality videos with leading researchers about their areas of interest such as music, older adult, pediatric, hearing preservation, etc. ‘Inside Story’ will premier at CI2016, the 14th International Conference on Cochlear Implants and Other Implantable Technologies,. The conference will be held on May 11-14, 2016.

The videos will be posted on YouTube and Facebook.

Read the press release from MED-EL for more information.

How Do Implanted Children Learn to Talk?

The latest issue of EXPLORE magazine is now available! Published by hearing implant manufacturer MED-EL, this international publication provides an in-depth look at key hearing loss-related topics.  EXPLORE KIDS was just released and is available for free (print or download) at www.medel.com/explore.  One sample article, How Implanted Children Learn to Talk, is republished here with permission for your convenience.

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MED-EL Rehabilitation Manager, Ingrid Steyns,explains how children with cochlear implants can learn to speak as well as their peers

In what circumstances are cochlear implants (CIs) suitable for a child? 

CIs are considered for children diagnosed with a type of hearing loss known as sensorineural at a severe to profound level in one or both ears. In some countries, children with moderately severe sensorineural hearing loss may also be considered when insufficient benefit is derived from hearing aids. Access and commitment to auditory training, also known as (re)habilitation (see below), is very important, too.

‘Rehabilitation’ refers to the process after CI surgery in which people who have lost their hearing learn how to hear again.

‘Habilitation’ refers to the process after CI surgery in which people who were born deaf learn to hear for the first time.

Why is auditory training necessary?

After a CI is fitted, a person receives stimulation that provides a message of sound to their brain. An understanding of this message isn’t necessarily immediate, and skills for understanding these sounds need to be practised. During auditory training, CI users learn to recognise sounds and words, gradually improving over time. For adults, the average rehabilitation period takes six to 12 months, but for young children, (re)habilitation programmes often last for several years, as this is a critical time for speech and language learning.

How does the training of babies and young children who have never been able to hear differ from the rehabilitation of adults?

The process of a child learning to speak is complex and relies heavily on their ability to hear. Babies must have adequate access to all the sounds of speech and numerous opportunities to listen to spoken language before they, in turn, can develop it. If a child is fitted with a CI in the early years of life, their habilitation model can follow a development that’s very similar to the way children without hearing problems would learn to listen and speak. The brain is born ready to receive sound and is in a sensitive period for language learning. For people who lose their hearing after learning to speak, the rehabilitation model will follow a re-learning pathway, where sound provided by the CIs is shaped to match their pre-existing knowledge of spoken language.

How can implanted children be best supported in learning to speak?

A team approach is most effective with support from the surgeon, audiologist, speech and language pathologist and rehabilitation specialist, as well as the family and teachers. The family’s role is extremely important. Listening, speech and language are learnt through abundant, meaningful exposure, so families must be given the right information on suitable strategies to achieve this. For a baby or a young child, this may involve singing songs to stimulate particular speech sounds that they don’t yet have in their repertoire, or playing games and activities that include certain features of language. It’s a case of closely monitoring the child’s progress while incorporating specialist knowledge, and adapting goals to further improve the child’s outcomes.

Can deaf children with implants learn to hear and speak as well as their normal-hearing peers?
In the early years of a child’s life, the brain is at its most adaptable, ready to receive sound and develop language. With early cochlear implantation and rehabilitation, this prime period for development can be maximised, and deaf children with CIs have the potential to achieve listening and speaking skills that are comparable to those of their peers who don’t have a hearing impairment.

About the Author

Ingrid Steyns

© Peter Fesler

Ingrid Steyns is a Rehabilitation Manager at MED-EL’s head office in Innsbruck, Austria. She is a certified listening and spoken language specialist and a practising speech and language pathologist.

Free Shipping on CiWear Shirts

37ba4bb6d5-Ci-Wear-TM-logoCiWear and Cochlear Implant HELP are proud to offer free shipping on CiWear merchandise to the Continental US until 12/31/2015.  Use voucher code ‘cochlearimplanthelp’ at checkout.

The folks at CiWear who make the shirts that hold off-ear cochlear implant processors securely and manage cables now offer shirts in two different materials – one for swimming, and another for sports.

Ci Wear Swim

Ci WearTM teamed up with Victory KoreDryTM, a manufacturer with 30 years of experience in water sports gear, to manufacture our shirts in the USA. CiWear Swim

Key Features:

  • KoreDryTM fabric that is 80% nylon and 20% lycra
  • water-repellent
  • Breathable
  • Dries quickly so you stay warmer
  • Raglan sleeves and flatlock stitching for added comfort and flexibility
  • U.V. tested at UPF 50+ (equal to SPF 150+) factor both wet and dry giving it a rating you can depend on to protect your skin against the damaging rays of the sun when in or out of the water

Ci Wear Sport

Made with high performance premium quality Wicko active mesh for moisture management to keep skin cool and dry. Ideal for all your indoor and outdoor activities, including swimming. The lightweight, stretchable fabric combined with raglan sleeves, and flatlock stitching make for easy movement, flexibility and added comfort.

Key Features

  • Made of 100% Polyester
  • Quick drying
  • Breathable
  • Moisture management (wicking)
  • lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Ideal for putting under uniform or wearing as a exercise shirt
  • Pockets fit the Neptune, AquaCase and smartphones and digital music players upto the size of an IPhone 6