“This is awesome!” exclaimed 9-year-old Joshua Gomez as he listened to his favorite song during his appointment at the Stanford Children’s Health Ear Clinic in Palo Alto on July 21. It’s “awesome” because he is now able to hear the music more clearly than ever before.
Thanks to a new bone-conduction processor and implant, Joshua has regained the ability to hear. After losing his hearing at 3 years old, Joshua underwent numerous unsuccessful surgeries before being referred to Stanford Children’s Health. Here, he was diagnosed with congenital cholesteatomas, a skin cyst in the middle-ear that can cause significant hearing loss.
“It was heartbreaking because there wasn’t anything I could do about it. All I could do was take him to the doctors and hope that maybe something would work this time,” Joshua’s mom, Amelia Gomez, said in an interview with ABC 7 News.
In Joshua’s case, the condition was not able to be treated with standard in-ear hearing aids, so his team of doctors, including audiologist Dr. Melissa Tribble and otolaryngologist Dr. Kay Chang, took a unique approach. Last October, Joshua received a hearing implant that uses bone conduction to transmit sound to the inner ear. Over the past 9 months, the bone-conduction processor has greatly improved his hearing, but only on one side.
Until this week.
Now, Joshua has the implant and processors for both ears, which enables him to hear clear, 360-degree sound. The devices pair directly with Apple technology, allowing him to listen to music and apps. Joshua, we agree — this is awesome!
- Kate DeTrempe
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