I’m a little bit hesitant to post this news because my test results definitely don’t seem to match with what I’m experiencing in the “real world” and people already have expectations that are too high.Â My co-worker told me that my boss thinks I’ll be able to hear him yell across a field to me.Â I have to constantly get him to face me when we are working in the lab. I am always reminding him that I can’t understand the speaker phone even if he turns it up.Â Not to mention all the requests for phone calls I’ll get if my family thinks I can hear on the phone.Â I still hate the phone.Â I don’t plan on adding minutes to my voice plan.Â Learn to text message or IM if you want to talk to me.
But here goes…
It had only been two weeks from my first map and I didn’t think my hearing with the CI had changed much at all in that time.Â So I was more than a bit shocked when my audiologist put me in the sound testing booth and played the CUNY sentences.Â I understood them all almost perfectly.Â She actually stopped me half way through and said “Sara, do you know this list? You keep smiling!”Â I said “Nooo! I’m just smiling because I can hear them! They are easy!”Â The CUNY sentences were pretty easy, I got 60-some percent last time.Â Then she switched to the HNT sentences in quiet. Last time they were very difficult to hear, the voice was barely audible. Surprise, this time they were almost as easy as the CUNY sentences.Â Wow.Â Then she did HNT in noise (quiet noise with the voice louder). That was harder but I still scored in the 70s. CNC words – definitely still hard, but I got around 50%.Â This was on the HD-CISÂ coded program that is optimized for speech.Â I normally use FSP because it sounds “fuller” or “richer” to me.Â When we switched to FSP my scores all dropped by about 10%.Â She said this wasn’t surprising and we are still planning for me to use FSP coding.
I now have four programs – 1 and 2 are the same settings that don’t give me sound outside of the speech range (nothing below 250 Hz and nothing above 4000 or 5000 I think).Â 1 is the HD-CIS coding and 2 is FSP.Â Program 3 is a program designed for speech in a very noisy place, such as a restaurant.Â This is nice because the sensitivity adjustment never cut out anything in a restaurant.Â Program 4 is FSP with a full range of frequencies – very good for music or listening to birds when I want to hear more than speech.
Another change is that I’ve gone bi-modal. My audiologist said that when I decided to I could wear my hearing aid again in the unimplanted ear but that she recommended sticking with it and not going back and forth. So I decided to do that on my drive home from Chapel Hill. My goal has always been to hear low sounds via the hearing aid, I just wanted to make sure the implanted ear got a good start.Â I still feel like the hearing aid is barely there. It’s very overpowered by the sounds from the CI.Â After my next map (mid August) I’m going to see if I can get it adjusted (probably have to visit my local audiologist) to feel more balanced.