Hearing Aids & Implantable Devices

What is a hearing aid?

A hearing aid is a tool that helps an individual with hearing loss hear sounds they otherwise could not. It is worn in or behind the ear and amplifies sounds based on each individual’s personal listening needs. Hearing aids are highly advanced, digital microprocessors that have the ability to improve hearing in quiet and noisy situations. The goal of hearing aid use is to improve hearing and communication, to allow every person with hearing loss to live life to the fullest.

See the American Speech and Hearing Association website for more information about hearing aids.

What are Cochlear Implants?

A cochlear implant is a medically implanted programmable device that provides hearing to individuals who receive insufficient benefit from conventional hearing aids.  While implant technology is highly innovative it is not a cure for hearing loss. While hearing aids amplify acoustic sound, a cochlear implant system uses direct electrical stimulation to excite the auditory nerve.  A cochlear implant consists of two parts: the internal implant and the external speech processor. For adults with severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss or partial deafness, a cochlear implant can provide better access to speech, improve understanding and ease of listening.

Not everyone is a candidate for cochlear implantation. Audiological testing, speech-language assessments and medical evaluation provide a comprehensive work-up to determine cochlear implant candidacy.  We accept referrals for cochlear implant candidacy from audiologists, physicians, hearing instrument specialists, speech-language pathologists, and potential candidates themselves.

For information on Manitoba`s Surgical Hearing Implant Program:

See how a cochlear implant operates:

Cochlear implant manufacturers:

Bone Anchored Implants

For individuals who present with conductive or mixed hearing loss, a bone anchored hearing aid may be a surgical option.  For information, visit the following webpage: umanitoba.ca/faculties/health_sciences/medicine/units/otolaryngology/8535.html