Brief History

Gage was born with a profound loss which was confirmed through numerous tests, and even a sedated ABR by age four months. He was born with Goldenhar Syndrome (first said to be First/Second Branchial Arch Syndrome, then CHARGE) which is somewhat rare and usually affects only the right side of the face and ears. However, he was affected equally on both sides and began wearing hearing aids at age 4 mos. We chose the oral approach from the beginning in hopes he had enough aided residual hearing to learn spoken English. His hearing declined even more so we began introducing signs at which point he had always been so auditorily stimulated he rejected them...he only wanted to speak and read lips. We decided the best option would be a cochlear implant and his ears were so malformed inside and out that he wasn't implanted until he was three and a half. This is when he began AVT (auditory verbal therapy) and continued it for a year post surgery. He had caught up so quickly with me doing "therapy" at home and taking him to see an actual therapist that he didn't even qualify for speech services upon Kindergarten registration at a mainstream school. Brooklyn passed her newborn hearing screening but was discovered to have a loss at age nine months when I insisted to the pediatrician I felt like she couldn't hear well. I was assured that since she could already speak several words she was fine so I guess he was shocked to find out she had a moderate/severe loss. She was aided at 10 months and her hearing quickly declined like her brother's. She was implanted at age two and a half with her first one and when insurance approved number two for her at age three and a half she became bilateral. Brooklyn had AVT for about a year total as well but has since been released to a regular speech-language pathologist until she begins Kindergarten following in her brother's footsteps. Gage unfortunately had a rare infection that we could not rid with conventional medications, oral or iv, so in Dec 2008 his CI was removed. He was home schooled for the following four months until his hearing was restored. He received bilaterals in April of 09 and heard better than ever expected. He loves his two devices even better than his first and the infection was a blessing in disguise. We never thought he'd be a candidate for bilaterals until we viewed his recent CT scans which proved otherwise. His cochlea was clearly visible at age eight and we are just happy that he is happy. We've had a super great team this whole time helping us to make sure we knew how to play and interact with the kids so that their days filled with learning, fun, and language. Gage's language tests have put him way above his chronological age and Brook is certainly age appropriate herself if not above, she just hasn't had as extensive testing as Gage has, yet. Keep checking the posts for updates.