Thursday, May 15, 2014

Update on Hearing

In a previous post I mentioned all the things we'd be doing to to help Kiddo's hearing this month.  (For those new to the blog or our hearing situation, Kiddo was born with a moderate-severe hearing loss in his right ear, and wore a hearing aid in it for about two years.)  Thank you to each of you who have asked about Kiddo and prayed for us during our two major hearing procedures/tests this month.

Ear tubes are in!
Due to negative pressure in the ears and some fluid that was causing frequent ear infections, ear ventilation tubes were the way to go.  We were supposed to get the tubes in the week before, but as luck would have it, Kiddo got a double ear infection and a fever of over 100. The doc said we should reschedule for when his temp was back to normal, so six days later we found ourselves in Children's Hospital for the procedure.  Kiddo did great!  A little overwhelmed at first, and he cried a little bit when they took him to the OR since we weren't allowed to go with him, but about 15 minutes after they took him to the OR, the doc was out to talk to us, telling us all went well, that there was lots of fluid and that we needed to administer drops in his ears twice a day for the next week.  They brought him to us shortly after that in the recovery room, and Kiddo was content to snuggle with Daddy while Mommy hunted for something to drink for the thirsty boy, since he hadn't had anything to eat or drink since the day before.  He sipped on his apple juice while watching Mickey Mouse on TV, and about an hour later we were on our way home.  He demanded to "eat, eat, eat!" and so we stopped at Chick-fil-A where he devoured his lunch and when we made it home, was running around with Little Brother as if nothing had ever happened.  Such a trooper!

Hearing test was a success!
Yesterday was not only Apraxia Awareness Day, but the day we got the big hearing test that would show us not only if the tubes were helping, but if he should be wearing his hearing aid again.  Due to all the pressure and fluid before the tubes, his left ear was hearing at a mild hearing loss range, and his right ear, at a severe-profound range (essentially he couldn't hear anything at all out of that ear except for a few frequencies).  I'm happy to report that after the tubes his left ear is now hearing normal again (Yay!) and his right ear at moderate-severe loss range.  That's where it has been since birth and until all the fluid took residence.  Which means, he does NOT need to wear his hearing aid.  Wahoo!  In fact, the awesome audiologist I met yesterday said they no longer recommend hearing aids for one ear if the other has normal hearing after a few studies have been run.  The studies revealed that language can develop naturally with perfect hearing in only one ear, that only having one hearing aid doesn't help the hearing as much as having two but can actually begin to impact the hearing of the good ear.  So with three audiologists saying he's fine without the hearing aid, we are totally convinced and are thrilled that we no longer need to wonder about if he should be wearing it.  Also, instead of me having to take him to both an ENT and an audiologist every three months (as I've been doing since he was born), we now will go twice a year, just to ensure his good ear is still hearing well.  I like having less appointments to go to. ;)

Happy Better Hearing and Speech Month!

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