Deafness : an external device should change the lives of children
Published the 01.07.2017 at 10.20 am
In France, 1 child out of 8 000 is born with a malformation of the ear called microtia. During development, the cartilage of the ear has not developed correctly. The external auditory canal or the eardrum can also be absent. The hearing of these children is then compromised.
This type of hearing loss is called conductive hearing loss. Usually the inner ear, or cochlea, works very well. But the fact of their malformation, the sounds do not reach this area. Result : if someone shouts, these children hear only a whisper.
“Usually, they suffer a moderate or severe. If both ears are affected, this can cause significant delays in language, ” explains the Pr Françoise Denoyelle, ENT surgeon, pediatric at the Necker hospital (Paris) and director of the Centre de Reference Malformations ENT rare.
A rehabilitation difficult
To address this type of hearing loss, hearing aids conventional cannot be used. “Up to 5 to 6 years, we use vibrators, which are placed on the scalp and that transmit sound to the inner ear through the bone, describes the specialist. But these devices are necessarily maintained by a bandage very tight, which is cumbersome and uncomfortable for the children “.
Systems implantable with screws in the bone or magnetized may be used. But the devices are not easy to wear. “Now we need them because they allow us to perform the tests, prolonged before you choose a device which is implantable. It is also used for disorders of hearing transients, ” states the Pr Denoyelle.
Françoise Denoyelle, a surgeon in OTOLARYNGOLOGY at the hospital of Paris Necker : “beyond that we need devices to bring the sound to the inner ear… “