Mending; the Let Them Hear Foundation; and a note on Hi-Res 120.

The bandage came off this morning, so I look normal again, apart from rumpled hair and a right ear that’s bent outward a little bit. (It will return to place as the swelling subsides.) I haven’t needed to take Vicodin this morning and my ear hasn’t been ringing as much as it was yesterday. My appetite’s fine. I feel practically normal. My dad is sleeping on the couch, my cat is bugging me for food, and my inbox is continuing to fill up. I’m catching up on email and pitching articles: back to work. It’s a quiet, rainy day in San Francisco.

In an amazing bit of timing, my dad handed me a copy of December 17th’s Palo Alto Daily News as I was coming out of recovery. It has a front-page story about how the Let Them Hear Foundation persuaded Aetna and Blue Shield to cover bilateral implantation as a standard benefit. Take a look at the story here.

I’m still having some difficulty understanding voices with the Hi-Res 120 software. I had this problem when I tried it in beta back in 2004, and I’m having it now. People just sound fuzzy. To be sure, they sound more “natural” — Hi-Res 16 sounds electronic and tinny by comparison — and music sounds much better, but for speech it falls short of the clarity I want to have.

I’m planning to ask Annie Vranesic, my audiologist, to tweak my Hi-Res 120 map when I activate my other ear on January 24th, and that should help. I’ve only had one mapping session with Hi-Res 120, and I remember vividly that it took four or five mapping sessions with Hi-Res 16 to get it where I wanted it to be. With new algorithms, it often takes a while to fine-tune them. It’s also been suggested to me that I could have both programs on my processor and use them where they do best for me.

By the way, the Harmony has amazing battery life. With my CII BTE, I got about six hours out of each battery charge. With the Harmony, I’m getting something like 20 hours out of each charge. I change the battery every other day, instead of two times a day. It’s a very nice feature.

Speak Your Mind