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March 22, 2006

Cochlear Implant Opens Up Queens Boy's World

From: Western Queens Gazette, NY - Mar 22, 2006

Jeremy Michaels is a straight-A student at Queens Lutheran School. Last quarter, he made

Principal's List and is preparing

for high school. He hopes to attend either Stuyvesant or Bronx Science, two of the city's most prestigious and academically demanding secondary schools, and wants to become a scientist. Meanwhile, he plays with his younger sister, Jennifer, and the Michaels family's recently adopted dog, King and does all the other things a normal 13-year-old boy does.

Jeremy isn't much different from other youngsters in his academic performance or his aspirations. But Jeremy differs in one very important way from his classmates- he is profoundly deaf. Thanks to Dr. Simon Parisier of New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, however, Jeremy doesn't notice the difference-and neither does anyone else.

Jeremy's hearing loss was suspected while he was still in utero, his mother, Barbara, reports, and he was officially diagnosed at nine weeks of age. Parisier performed a cochlear implant procedure when Jeremy was two years old, and Jeremy was mainstreamed as soon as he entered school. "He's completely oral, does not use sign language and he hears everything," Barbara Michaels reports.

Besides his work at Manhattan Eye and Ear Infirmary, Parisier and his wife, Elaine, founded the Children's Hearing Institute in 1983 to provide funding for research, educational support and other programs related to the restoration of hearing for infants and children with hearing loss or profound deafness. Parisier and his wife have adopted a "whole child" approach, resulting in comprehensive evaluations and optimal educational placement, as well as continuing support in the child's school setting. They also conduct research related to causes of deafness that ultimately can benefit people of all ages.

For more information, contact The Children's Hearing Institute, 310 East 14th St., New York, NY 10003; 212-614-8380, or visit

© 2006 Western Queens Gazette