Personal, Pre-Surgery

Pre-Cochlear Implant Surgery Fear: The Balance Test


Image Credits: Fearless Flight

I’m just a little more than a day away from my 2nd appointment with my cochlear implant surgeon, Dr. Wilcox. During this appointment I will have a series of tests done to see how well I’ll do with an implant. One of these tests is a balance test, and I’ll be honest, I’m very nervous and a bit scared of it.

I obviously never had a balance test done before. I never heard of anyone every getting one done either. Actually, I never heard of balance tests until a few weeks ago. I never even knew hearing and balance had any kind of connection until like two weeks ago. Apparently, there’s quite a strong connection…which may explain why my balance is so awful…

I really don’t know what to think about this test. My mom says to just do my best and try my hardest. Of course I am going to try to keep my balance — but I can’t help but wonder if that would be good or not. Is it better to have good balance or weak balance if you want the cochlear implant? Which is expected of me the most? In all honesty, I just want my implant and I’m afraid of messing this up and them saying I’m not a candidate after all…

I posted in the Cochlear Implant Experiences Group on Facebook asking people what I should expect. Everyone says something about them blowing hot and cold water in your ear. How weird. I have trouble imagining how water in my ear can affect my balance…but I guess I’ll find out lol. I also heard they may give me goggles to trace my eye movement to determine my balance? Also weird. That makes me a bit nervous too. Can’t putting water in my ear be dangerous? Can’t that cause an infection? I guess I need to trust that they know what they are doing. I mean they are the professionals after all, right? Surely they wouldn’t do something to cause an infection. I’m just being a bit paranoid.

On the plus side, people have been saying they never heard of people failing this test or having it prevent them from getting an implant. So that’s good, right? I just hope I don’t fall over and make an ass out of myself haha. My balance really does tend to suck…but yeah. Anyway some people say it’s not quite a big deal. More of a way for them to determine which ear they should implant first and to see if I’d need balance therapy after or before surgery. I hope it doesn’t come down to that. That sounds like it would be awkward and annoying, but if it means being able to hear, still worth it.

If any of you guys are reading this who have an implant or are in the process of being implanted, did you have to get a balance test done? What was your experience like?

My test is this Wednesday, November 5th so I’m sure I’ll be updating you all on how it goes shortly after. Wish me luck! 🙂

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