Today Bella had her yearly check up at Mayo Clinic for her implants. It's always a bit of an event since it is two hours away. This year we were up bright and early and had to leave by 9:30am. It's never as easy as just driving there and parking. There's always construction, a super busy parking ramp, or something to impede our timely arrival. This year we found out that they had moved the cochlear implant facility to a new building so we had to hurry and find it before our appointment. Always something..
Once we arrived at our appointment the fun began. Our first appointment was for mapping and programming Bella's implants. It went well and the implants were in working order. We had just replaced both of her controllers this summer (thank goodness for that extended warranty) due to wear issues, so the audiologist commented on how brand new they looked. Moving onto testing, Bella once again demonstrated the advantages of early implantation by her outstanding scores. Here they are:
CNC Monosyllabic Words List 5 in quiet 96% words correct 97% phonemes correct
AZBio Sentences List 4 in quiet 96% words correct.
The Mayo staff commented that Bella is performing at the ceiling of speech perception measures. Bella was also asked to participate in two studies that Mayo is conducting regarding hearing in noise. It was similar to studies that she has been in at Madison. I don't have the results yet and will update when I do.
The only change made to her implant program was combining ADRO and ASC together. This was done after Mayo's research that it helps users hear better in loud environments. Bella says her voice a little strange, but I think she will get used to it. I am anxious to see if it helps in loud restaurants.
After her implant programming we went to lunch at Pannekoeken restaurant which was Bella's favorite stop last year and she wanted to return. She loves when they yell "Pannekoeken" when they bring your order.
After lunch, Bella had her speech-language examination. She had the OWLS test (Oral and Written Language Scales) and the Test of Narrative Language (TNL).
On the OWLS she scored at the 47th percentile age equivalent of 8 years 5 months on the listening comprehension portion. On the oral expression section she scored in the 16th percentile age equivalent 6 years 11 months. Both of these are about the same as last year which indicate progress at the rate of maturation.
On the TNL she scored poor on the Narrative Comprehension due to her short term memory issues. We continue to battle reading comprehension due to her memory problems, but she is improving. Last year she was not given this test because her speech evaluator said she would not be able to complete it. The upside to the TNL test was on the oral narration section Bella scored in the average range. So Bella may have trouble remembering stories when read to her, but she is very good at making up her own!
Overall it was a good visit and set us up to have a good year...