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Saturday 24th August 2019

Youngest ever cochlear implant in the UK

8th April 2014

The youngest ever cochlear implant has been fitted on a three-month-old baby. Her name is Evie Smith and she is now one of 5,000 children in the UK with the implants.

Cochlear implant baby

Audiological specialists fitted external processors to the outside of her ears. These processors pick up sounds and connect them with the internal implants, which send electrical signals to the brain.

The principle audiologist scientist at the St Thomas' hospital, Katherine Wilson said that Evie had the implants at such a young age because of the after-effects of her meningitis.

She said: "We have to move very quickly to treat her. The bony growth in the inner ears that she had after meningitis meant we wouldn't have been able to get the implants later.

"Implants give these children a different dimension to their life - something they wouldn't otherwise have."

Cochlear implants cannot cure deafness. Their main focus is to help children like Evie experience sound - which helps with their learning.

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