Story of a Child

Yes – He heard & smiled n Said “Mamma”

Story of a child who is born deaf and mute, hailing from Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. The kid spent 3 years of his life not being able to hear & as a consequence not able to speak.

Desperation of the parents had reached the pinnacle, longing to hear his voice and witness a response to their words, the toddler way. Toddlers communication is routine in every family with normal hearing and speaking child. The anguish and desperation of a parent's with deaf child is beyond imagination for those who have not witnessed. The parents travelled from Dar Es Salaam, with faith & hope that their child will definitely get treated at Zydus Hospital, Ahmedabad.

The International Relations Department took made all the efforts to ensure the anxious parent’s smooth transit to India. Visa, Travel clearance and scores of questions prior to arrival were all managed efficiently. Upon reaching Zydus, I examined the very active & adorably cute patient. From the first instance, bet me – it was impossible for anyone to even guess that the child can’t hear.

Parents were thoroughly counselled regarding the deafness of their only child, available treatment option - Cochlear Implantation was explained as we tried to answer their questions, we were well aware the same will come back to us many times. That’s what it is when you are treating a kid, whose parents haven’t seen him respond to their words since birth.

The bubbly kid, electrified the environment around. He hated confinement & preferred to sit at the nursing station and play with the staff. He also ensured, each one of them got a good share of lung exercise with a lot of balloons blown almost every day. Following the protocols of Zydus Cochlear implant program investigations & cross references followed by vaccinations – all went on well. As planned, I conducted routine Bilateral Cochlear implantation in a single sitting. An uneventful surgery was followed by perioperative Neural Response telemetry, encouraging results suggested that both ear implant electrodes were in situ and responding as desired. Post-operative X-Rays too were performed for confirmation.

On the 21st day came of surgery came the moment of transformation – Switch On, the process was done in conjunction with the Audiology and AVT Department.

The first ever sound stimulation made the child cry and at same time mother had tears running down the joy was evident & visible. We all took a deep breath, a mixed feeling of happiness, satisfaction & an achievement.

With Speech and Auditory Verbal therapy carried on for a month while the family was in Ahmedabad, the development was evident with each session. Seeing their only child hear and witness the initial reactions to sound. It’s been over 2 years and we continue to be in touch with the family…. We changed many lives with just One Surgery and the happiness goes on.

By : Dr. Lav Selarka

Consultant ENT Surgery & Choclear Implant expert