Tuesday, March 17, 2009

2 months post-activation

Blog or take a relaxing bath? I'm hoping to be able to do both before my little man wakes up from his nap...

Yesterday was Lucas's 2-month post-activation mapping and speech evaluation. It was a long day for all of us. (Oma, aka my mom, went along to help keep Lucas entertained in the car, etc.)

We first met with audiology, and he immediately took Lucas into the booth to see what he is hearing. He was responding to speech at 20-25 decibels! I don't know if it will ever cease to bring tears to my eyes when he tells me that! I promptly asked for an audiogram. They were always blank before the CI. Not anymore! I'm so proud, I want to hang it on the fridge! (hahahahaha) Then Lucas got a few new programs with a bit more volume. We come back to see him in a month.

Here's a brief video of Lucas in the booth, if you're wondering what it's like. Babies, toddlers, and young children obviously can not be relied on to signal if they hear a sound, so they are taught to turn to a sound. They are then "rewarded" with the sight of a toy lighting up or moving. This is called Visual Reinforcement Audiometry. CHOP just got some much needed new toys for their sound booths. The toy he turning to is a frog playing the drums.


Then we met with speech. Lucas did not "perform" that well for her, although she wasn't too concerned. He just was not interested in using his voice! She gave me a hand-out on auditory and speech guidelines for children who have been implanted under 2 years of age. So far, Lucas is performing in the "expected" ranges, and has not hit any "red flag" categories. My goal for him for this month is to imitate 2 different vocal lengths. For example: ahhhhhhhhhhhhh and ah ah ah ah ah ah. According to her hand-out, he should be doing that by 3 months post-activation. She said she still wouldn't be that worried next time because of his age, but it's still my goal.

Here are some things that Lucas IS doing!

1. He "dances" to music! He wiggles and moves his head back and forth. I'm still trying to get that one on video! It's adorable!

2. Yesterday, he started babbling: "mamamamamama"! He said it probably 5 or 6 times in the car! I'm not certain that he's saying it with meaning, but it doesn't matter! It was wonderful.

3. He doesn't indicate to us that his coil has fallen off when it has, but he has begun to sit very still for us to put it back on. I think that's a good sign...

I also began the paperwork for bilateral implantation. The first step in that process at CHOP is to get insurance approval, so we'll see what happens with that. We go back to see ENT on April 10, and he's a BIG deciding factor also. More about that later, but I'm excited to get the paperwork rolling!

6 comments:

Kel said...

Oh my gosh, babbling! What an amazing sound that must have been, I think I would have burst into tears right then and there. It sounds like he is doing fabulously! I can't wait to hear how things go with the trek toward bilateral.

tammy said...

So glad to hear he's coming along so well! Hope the whole bilateral trek goes smoothly for you!

Mandie said...

Thank you so much for being so dilligent with documenting Lucas' progress. It is encouraging to those of us who will be facing CIs in the future. Not that I want my kids' hearing to get worse, but CIs can give my kids better hearing than they could ever get with hearing aids, and I look forward to that day.

Melanie said...

Way to go, Lucas!

leah said...

It sounds like he is doing great (no pun intended)! CHOP does have some pretty neat toys in the booth. Here's to a smooth approval process with the insurance company to go bilateral!

Amy said...

I have to tell you that I just love reading your blog. It gives me such hope and inspiration. Lucas really is doing so well you probably are beside yourself with happiness. Hearing that precious babbling must give you that extra reassurance that you made the right decision for him. Ava is only a couple weeks away from bilateral implant surgery. I can't wait! I see that you follow my blog as well. Take care and God bless!