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March 28, 2003

Researchers Study Benefits of Double Cochlear Implants

From: - Mar 28, 2003

British researchers plan to study whether the benefits of double cochlear ear implants for deaf people are worth the extra cost and extra surgery.

The standard approach now is to use only one cochlear ear implant. But the researchers say that deaf people who have had a cochlear implant put in each ear are able to hear in "3-D" and better able to pinpoint the source of a sound, BBC News Online reports.

Cochlear implants act as a mechanical alternative to parts of the ear that don't work properly. The implant is placed in the skin behind the ear. A wire connects it to the inner ear.

"The way that we hear usually involves two ears, so it is hardly surprising that two cochlear implants work better than one and have a very positive effect on the individual's well-being," lead researcher Mark Lutman told the BBC.

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