(HealthDay News) -- A cochlear implant is a small, electronic device that when surgically placed under the skin, stimulates the nerve endings in the cochlea to provide a sense of sound to a person who is severely hard of hearing.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approves of the use of cochlear implants in people aged 1 year and older.
The FDA explains how a cochlear implant works:
- A surgeon places the implant under the skin next to the ear.
- The implant receives sound from the outside environment, processes it, and sends small electric currents near the auditory nerve.
- These currents activate the nerve, which then sends a signal to the brain.
- The brain learns to recognize this signal and the wearer experiences this as "hearing."