Lurie Children’s Cochlear Implant Program is one of the largest pediatric implant and most experienced programs in the world. Founder Nancy Young, MD, has performed more than 1,000 cochlear procedures since 1991. Our multidisciplinary team members believe that collaborating with parents as partners is the best way to ensure that each child we serve has the opportunity to achieve their potential.
A cochlear implant provides information about spoken language and environmental sounds through stimulation of auditory nerve fibers in the inner ear. The cochlear implant is recognized as a standard treatment for profound deafness by the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery.
Our cochlear implant program treats infants, children and young adults with severe-to-profound sensorineural (inner ear or nerve) hearing loss in both ears. Our program has special expertise in evaluating deaf infants and toddlers. We evaluate deaf children with complex medical needs as well as those with auditory neuropathy and deafness due to meningitis. We also have experience treating children with malformed inner ears and other challenging anatomy.
We recommend newly identified infants and children be referred to our implant program soon after the diagnosis of significant bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. Early referral permits us to carefully monitor children to determine if their hearing aids will enable development of age-appropriate hearing and language skills.
Our goal is to help each child to develop their full communication potential. Improved hearing is critical to optimal language development (spoken and sign). Enriched language is essential for the cognitive development of all children.