A cochlear implant is essentially an electronic therapeutic device that does the work of spoiled parts of the inner ear also referred to as cochlea to offer sound signals to the brain. Unlike hearing aids, which make sounds louder, cochlear implants evade the injured hair cells of the inner ear to offer sound signals to the brain.
Douglas Grady is the author of Hear Now: The Miracle of Cochlear Implant: Hearing the Sounds of Life. He was born in the year 1956 in Teaneck, NJ. When he was just six month old, he lost his hearing and he started using hearing aids. He has attended Rochester Institute of Technology in 1974 and received his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering in the year 1980. He started his professional career as a mechanical engineer and obtained Professional Engineering license from the state of Texas as well. He has served as President of Board of Directors for the Deaf Council of Greater Houston and at present he is a structural engineer for Spirit Aerosystems located in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
He supported cochlear implant process and says this technology can help individuals who
- Get little or no advantage from hearing aids
- Have fair to intense hearing loss in both ears
- Achieve 60% or less on sentence recognition tests done by hearing specialists in the non-implanted ear or in ears with hearing aids.
- Achieve 50% or a lesser amount on sentence recognition tests done by hearing professionals in the ear to be entrenched
The cochlear implant allows the sound to be transferred to the hearing nerve and enables the person to hear. The process is explained below in detail:
- The sound processor sends out the digitally-coded sound via the coil on the exterior of the head to the implant.
- A sound processor is donned behind the ear which captures sound and changes it into digital code. The sound processor includes a battery that powers the whole system.
- The cochlear implant transforms the digitally-coded sound to electrical impulses and sends them down the electrode range placed in the inner ear.
- The electrodes of the implant rouse the hearing nerve of the inner ear, which then sends the impulses to the brain. This is the place where the impulses are interpreted as sound.
Douglas Grady has been appointed by Texas Governor George Bush to offer service on the Governor’s Committee for People with Disabilities. He has also been associated with the Committee for eight years. His main focus is offering education for deaf children. His book has encouraged a number of people who has hearing issues. Douglas says that with the cochlear implant one can lead a normal life and can also take part in daily activities just like a common person. The cochlear implant procedure often can be carried out as an outpatient surgery and the recovery time is quite minimum which means a person can lead a normal life after the surgical procedure.