1. Sarah K Masterson Sarah K Masterson United States says:

    Seriously? My son has complete unilateral hearing loss in his left ear. No, it is not caused by unilateral atresia. His ear is perfectly formed PHYSICALLY, it just doesn't work. Never has. Unfortunately, he wasn't diagnosed (conclusively) until he was 5. Around age 3, I started to suspect he had a problem. but since the only thing I noticed was how close he sat to the TV, I thought it was related to his eye sight! (Especially since I wear glasses.) ALL of that said, he is now 11 an HONOUR student with straight A's and a talented tackle football player. How much unilateral hearing loss effects a child has a LOT to do with the child and his or her parent(s). I make sure teachers/coaches are aware of the situation, I go to practices and games, I go up to the school...probably a lot more than my child wants! When he was younger, the school did use a FM system...most of the time. Now, in grade 6, the middle school isn't equipped with one; he knows how to compensate. He does just fine. I wish more than anything that I could fix the hearing in his bad ear. I know it would benefit him greatly, but when I talk about it with him, he says that he is FINE. That this is the way he has always heard things and he is okay with it. Isn't THAT what counts? How the kid feels about his/herself and how they function? Fixing the physical problem is great, but making the kid feel like he/she doesn't have a problem, THAT is he/she is okay should be the goal. No matter what.

    • toastie postie toastie postie United States says:

      I was born without a defective right ear. Mom didn't realize until going to wash me as a tiny baby. Right ear is slightly smaller than left. No hole on outer ear. Only learned that I didn't have an ear connection much later in life. When I was perhaps 5 or 6 my mom took me to Scottish Rite hospital for testing and a possible operation to fix the problem. Well no doctor wanted to do the operation(only found our later in adulthood why). They said, "Wait until she loses hearing in the good ear." Sounded callous at the time.

      I did have some problems, in the beginning, at school but only not hearing the teacher giving instructions. That was fixed somewhat by having me sit in one the front desks. But often, as I do now, I had to turn slightly to hear properly.

      But later in HS, I didn't let the teachers know about my problem and I was an honor student throughout my HS years.

      About 10 years ago, I finally went to an Otolaryngologist. After testing, he passed me onto another doctor(apparently he didn't want to fool with it). Again after testing, the doctor was very frank with me. After so many years I found out that I didn't have an ear canal. He would have to take skin from another part of my body to form one. There was no guarantee that it wouldn't be rejected and I would be back at zero. The chances were 1 in 100 that it might cause nerve damage. Okay. Not doing that. I'm now at the point, since hearing has lessen in good ear, that I need to look into an hearing aid.

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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