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HearLife: Voices of Cochlear Implant Recipients

When you're considering a cochlear implant for yourself, your child, or a loved one, it always helps to learn about the experiences of others who have taken the same journey.

Common Questions about Cochlear Implants

If you have severe-to-profound hearing loss and don't benefit from a hearing aid, a cochlear implant may be an effective long-term solution for you.

What is a cochlear implant system?

It's an electronic device that replaces the natural hearing function of the inner ear.

What does it look like?

It has two parts: an external sound processor worn over the ear, and an implant inserted during a surgical procedure.

Implant Photos

How is it different from a hearing aid?

Hearing aids amplify sound. Cochlear implants bypass the damaged part of the inner ear by sending electrical signals from the environment directly to the hearing nerve.

Are cochlear implants designed for people of a certain age?

No, people in many different stages of life can benefit. Cochlear implant candidates can be as young as 12 months or as young-at-heart as 80+.

Does insurance cover cochlear implants?

FDA-approved cochlear implants have become recognized as an established treatment for restoring hearing perception in those with severe-to-profound hearing loss. Unlike hearing aids, cochlear implants are covered by most insurance plans, including Medicare and Medicaid.

How do I know if I might be a candidate for an implant?

Ask your hearing health professional.

For more information about cochlear implants, to find out if you might be a candidate for this device, or for a list of cochlear implant centers near you, please visit

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