I went back to Tampa Tuesday to get my audie to work some more of her magic. She is awesome and I am so thankful and blessed to have her work with me.
When we go in for a mapping (adjustment) it is so hard for me. My implants have 16 electrodes that have different pitches. It gets complicated but there are virtually 120 pitches I get from these 16 electrodes. She starts off setting these electrodes at a comfortable level (loudness). It is so hard to tell with all the different pitches if I am getting them the same loudness which is what I am suppose to do. So now, she puts me in the booth and tests me with tones to see where I am hearing them. This tells her which electrodes I should go up in volume. So Tuesday after we did the booth thing, I told her to set it up where I needed to be and just let her drive. She raised all those high pitches quite a bit and they were loud but tolerable.
We also have a new strategy called Clear Voice which cuts out background noise and can tell speech from noise. There are three settings... low, medium and high. I use medium for everyday and LOVE it but have never tried high. I have found in noisy environments I seem to still have trouble so I wanted her to set one of my programs to high so I can try that out. My processor holds three programs so when she got the tones set, I had her set up one program with CV medium and one with CV high.
This left me with the third program I really didn't know what to do with. She then looks at me and says "how about if I set up the third program with something I want to try?". What she did with the third program is turn off the highest electrode. According to the booth, I am hearing right where I should be until I get to the high tones and it drops off there. Turning off this electrode does not mean I will not hear those high pitches, the electrode next to it will pick them up. So that is what she did.
So on the way home, I turned on talk radio (my rehab) to see how it sounded. Oh my, those high tones had a major hiss to them. All those "s" sounds sounded like sssssshhhhhhhh. At first I thought, uh oh we may have gone too high with those tones and then I thought maybe it will just take my brain time to adjust to it. I listened for about a half hour when it dawned on me to try program three where she turned off that electrode. She is SO smart! That took away most of that hiss! So for now, I still don't get to try CV high but I am hoping in time I will adjust to these highs that I have not heard in so long and can tolerate having that electrode back on. We shall see.
She also tested me in the booth with sentences just to see where I am at. I scored 58% which is kind of frustrating since I was at 69% shortly after my first implant. It is also encouraging because right before my second surgery I had dropped to 40% so at least I am heading in the right direction now. Most of the time, I feel like I am doing so much better than that. It is when I get in a group setting that I see I am not. So, I am still a work in progress but I am thrilled with what I can hear and I know it is only going to get better.