Cochlear implants

Working closely with our Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) surgeons, Neurosensory provides world-class standards in cochlear implant procedures. Our caring staff will be there every step of the way to ensure your Neurosensory cochlear implant experience is positive and supported.

For over 35 years we have witnessed many lives change through our highly successful cochlear implant program. We are one of the largest and most respected providers of cochlear services in the country and our expert team of ENT surgeons and highly qualified hearing health professionals work closely to ensure the transition to cochlear implants is totally supported.

Our services are available at our clinics in Brisbane, Toowoomba, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and Sydney. Neurosensory’s cochlear implant program can help improve quality of life for those with severe hearing impairments

At Neurosensory, we offer cochlear and bone conduction implants from both Cochlear and Med-el. Your Neurosensory hearing health care professional will thoroughly examine your individual hearing challenges and offer you expert advice on the most suitable implant for your personal hearing needs.

If you are suffering from a severe to profound hearing loss and hearing aids alone are not adequate to meet your hearing needs, then the Neurosensory cochlear implant process may be the best option for you.

To help determine if you need cochlear implants, even with the assistance of hearing aids, the following questions may be of assistance. Are you:

  • Tending to avoid social situations?
  • Asking people to repeat themselves, so you understand them?
  • Needing subtitles to be able to watch TV?
  • Relying on lip reading to participate in conversations?
  • Having difficulty hearing on the phone?
  • Finding it hard keeping up with interaction at work or in meetings?
  • Feeling exhausted at the end of the day, after having to work so hard to follow conversations?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions and think you may need cochlear implants, Neurosensory can help. Our dedicated cochlear team will inform you whether a cochlear implant is suitable for you. If you are in good health and meet the criteria, then you may be a candidate for cochlear implant surgery.

If you would like to discuss cochlear implants further, call Neurosensory on 1300 965 513.

Cochlear Implant and remote

Hearing Aid Check

Did you know, cochlear implants may help when hearing aids are no longer enough?

The online Hearing Aid Check is simple, free and can be taken from the comfort of your home. It will compare your performance with hearing aids to people with cochlear implants.The results will reveal if you should consider other options for better hearing.

Frequently asked questions

It is time when you struggle to hear conversation even when wearing hearing aids or have a severe hearing loss in at least one ear.

For many people with a severe hearing loss, hearing aids provide volume but limited clarity.   This is because of damage to hair cells in the inner ear.

The cochlear implant replaces the function of the damaged inner ear.  This enhances clarity of sound and improves ability to understand speech.

The cochlear implant consists of an external sound processor and an implant.   The surgeon positions the implant under the skin and into the inner ear.  The part in the inner ear has 22 tiny hearing electrodes.

You will attend an appointment with an Implant Audiologist  where you will complete speech tests to find out how much you understand with hearing aids on (you will be asked to repeat words and sentences).   Based on your score we can determine if you will do better with a cochlear implant or a hearing aid.

A. The Sound Processor picks up sound (eg. Speech)

B. Sound sent through the coil to the implant under the skin

C. Signal moves to the inner ear where the tiny electrodes are stimulated. The hearing nerve picks up the signals and sends them to the brain.

Step 1 – Audiology Assessment

  • Hearing Test
  • Speech Tests

Step 2 – Appointment with Implant Surgeon

  • Medical Review
  • May refer for CR/ MRI scan of ear and balance test

Step 3 – Surgery

  • 1-2 hour operation
  • Overnight stay in hospital

Step 4 – Implant ‘Switch On’

  • 2 weeks after surgery
  • Set up of initial program on implant
  • Followed by 2-5 appointments to fine tune device

The cost of the cochlear implant is covered by private health insurance.  Silver level or higher hospital cover is needed.    Audiology fees in the first year will be around $2000 to $3000.  Other expenses include gap payments for the anaesthetist and implant surgeon.

After the first year there is an annual programming appointment.  The out-of-pocket cost for this appointment is $145 ($89 if you have a pension card).

If cost is preventing you from hearing better, please talk to us about repayment plans or subsidies available.

A cochlear implant sounds unusual at first.  It has been described as sounding electronic and a bit like a chipmunk.  Over a period of 3 to 12 months the ability to understand speech improves substantially and almost all adults report that the clarity is far superior to a hearing aid.

There is no age limit.  Many clients at Neurosensory were over 80 years of age when they first received a cochlear implant.  All clients report an improved quality of life, less frustration and increased independence.

No. Initially cochlear implants were only for people who had profound hearing loss.  However,  technology and surgical procedures have improved over the intervening 30 years.   Hence, cochlear implants now provide substantial benefit to people who still have some hearing but struggle to hear conversation clearly.

Yes!  Hearing from two ears has many benefits.  These include better understanding of speech in noise and improved ability to tell the direction of sound.

Over 70% of Neurosensory clients can use the phone.  Phone calls can even be streamed directly to the implant from a mobile phone which improves clarity and ease of listening.

Implant surgery takes approximately 1 to 2 hours and involves an overnight stay in hospital.

Most people take a week off work.  They are then able resume normal activities.

Cochlear implants have less than a 2% failure rate.  Hence, there is rarely a need to remove/replace them.

Initially you will get an implant on one ear.   Many of our clients enjoy the benefits of a second implant 6 to 12 months later.

The sound processor (external part) is removed for showers, swimming and sleeping.  The implant is completely under the skin so is not effected.  A waterproof case can be purchased if you would like to swim when wearing your sound processor.

Most clients experience immediate benefits at switch on with noticeable improvements continuing over the next three months. The results do vary greatly from person to person.  To optimise progress, it is recommended to follow your home based listening program which will be provided to you by your audiologist.

In the first year most clients attend 3 to 6 appointments in the first year. Subsequent years 1 to 2 appointments. All appointments in the first year are covered by the initial clinical fee and there are no additional costs.

A cochlear implant doesn’t restore hearing back to normal.  You will always have some difficulty hearing in very noisy situations. You may continue to require subtitles for movies on TV and some people will only be able to understand conversation in quiet. However, almost everyone reports improved quality of life and are happy with the benefits provided by their cochlear implant.

Book a cochlear implant assessment appointment at Neurosensory.  This will be a 1 to 2 hour appointment booked with an Implant Audiologist.

At this appointment you will be given information as to whether you will benefit from a cochlear implant.