Cochlear Implants

The Cochlear Implant Center at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital helps children with severe to profound hearing loss who do not respond to traditional hearing aids. Our multidisciplinary team of compassionate professionals includes audiologists, neorotologist, pediatric otolaryngologists, speech pathologists, and a social worker who all work together to ensure your child has the maximum access to sound in order to facilitate optimal speech and language development.

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About Our Program and Team

The cochlear implant journey includes an extensive evaluation process and many visits before and after the surgery. Our team will be there for you and your child throughout the process – from your very first visit, to cochlear implant surgery, and through the years of audiologic follow up and speech-language therapy.

Learn more about our team members and their roles.

Our Evaluation Process

We want to make sure that your child is a good candidate for cochlear implant surgery so we thoroughly evaluate your child before scheduling the implant. Our evaluation process may include medical testing (like a CT scan or MRI) and discussions about family and social support.

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The evaluation typically includes:

  1. Pediatric Otolaryngology (ENT): This helps determine if your child is medically a candidate for a cochlear implant. We may suggest some medical tests, including genetic testing, an MRI or a CT scan.
  2. Audiology: We will discuss your child's hearing history and evaluate hearing with and without hearing aids.
  3. Speech and Language Pathology (Auditory-Verbal Therapy): Involves assessing your child's communication abilities and helps set goals for pre- and post-cochlear implant language development.
  4. Social Work: This part of the evaluation helps us find additional ways that we can help your family during the cochlear implant process. We will connect you with our social worker who can provide ongoing support.

Who is a Candidate?

Cochlear implants are recommended for patients who receive little to no benefit from traditional hearing aids. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of cochlear implants for children who meet the following criteria:

  • At least 12 months of age
  • Severe-to-profound hearing loss
  • Medically cleared or healthy enough to undergo surgery
  • Little to no benefit from traditional hearing aids appropriately fit and worn during all waking hours
  • Older children unable to understand at least 30% of words presented with listening only tasks
  • Family who can provide support and follow-up after surgery

Learn what to expect before and after surgery.

Contact Us

To learn more about the Cochlear Implant Center or schedule an appointment, call 954-265-1623.

There isn’t a day that goes by that I am not excited for her and her future and what she will be able to hear and do.
Sara, mom of cochlear implant patient