Friday, 3 March 2017

Linking Deafness to Early Dementia.

How many deaf know who the minister for agriculture and fisheries is ? 89% of hearing didn't !  (It's George Eustace OK). When will they stop blaming deafness for every ailment under the sun...

A Yorkshire hospital has launched a new study looking at a possible link between maintaining hearing using cochlear implants and preventing dementia. Bradford Royal Infirmary’s Yorkshire Auditory Implant Service (YAIS) is the only UK centre which has been invited to participate in the research, which is taking place throughout Europe and in the Middle East. 

Increasing evidence suggest that being able to communicate and socialise can prevent people declining in old age and possibly conditions like dementia. The announcement of the trial, which comes on World Hearing Day, was healed as “potentially life-changing” by a leading medic. Ear Nose and Throat surgeon Professor Chris Raine, from Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “This is a fascinating and potentially life-changing study because it has the capacity to uncover whether restored hearing can stave off age-related cognitive conditions like dementia. 

“The aim of the research is to find out how cochlear implants can benefit older adults. Previous research projects have shown that having a hearing loss can lead to faster cognitive decline in the adult population, as can having a general anaesthetic in older adults. “We want to find out if using a cochlear implant can help prevent this rate of cognitive decline amongst adults, aged over 55.” A cochlear implant is a small electronic device that is surgically implanted in a short operation and can provide someone who is deaf or severely hard of hearing with a sense of sound. 

Although they cannot restore normal hearing, the implants provide a representation of sounds that allows the patient to understand speech again. The YAIS has been asked to take part because of its pioneering work of implanting cochlear implants in older people under local anaesthetic, which is safer. Every month, at least one elderly patient undergoes the procedure and the oldest ever was 91-year-old Charles Holden in 2015. Jane Martin, head of the YAIS, added: “We are honoured to have been asked to participate in this research run by the Hearing Group. 

It is a reflection of the pioneering work carried out by our surgeons who are at the forefront of implanting so many elderly adults under local anaesthetic from across the region and beyond. “Research has proved that local anaesthetics are safer for older people who very often have other co-morbidities and it’s widely known that they can also have an impact on a person’s cognitive decline.....

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