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April 19, 2005

Deaf mother can hear after ear op

From: Shropshire Star - Telford,England,UK - Apr 19, 2005

A Shropshire mother is enjoying all the sounds the rest of us take for granted thanks to a miracle operation which has restored her hearing after more than two decades in near-silence.

The rush of noise proved a lot for Joanna Brown to accustom herself to at first.

The mother-of-two, of Warwick Close, Market Drayton, who was born deaf, is getting used to noises such as birdsong and mobile phone text alerts after a successful cochlear implant.

The two to three-hour operation involved inserting the implant into the inner ear and replacing the damaged hair cells responsible for hearing, before it was connected to a speech processor worn behind the ear.

The 27-year-old had the operation at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in Birmingham, as part of a study into the procedure in January and is moving closer to having her hearing restored completely after several return visits to see specialists.

She said she wished she had had the operation years ago.

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