When Angel S. found out her son, Chance, has auditory neuropathy, she was overwhelmed and upset. After taking time to look into solutions to help him hear, she chose cochlear implants for her son. Now that Chance has Cochlear™ Nucleus® implants, he is starting to learn how to say new words. His parent’s goal for him this year? To say 100 words!


“When Chance had his initial newborn hearing test, he failed. A few weeks later, we took him to get another hearing test and he passed. When Chance was 2, we could tell something was not right, so we then got an auditory brainstem response test (ABR) to see what was going on. I remember crying when they took him back to take the test because I was scared about him having to be put under anesthesia.

I was in the waiting room when they came back and got me to explain the results of the test. That is when we found out that he had a severe hearing loss called auditory neuropathy (AN). I was holding tears back; I just picked him up and held him. After we got to the car, I called his dad to tell him the news as he was away for work. I lost it and could not even get a word out to him.

Hearing solution for auditory neuropathy

Child swimming, who has auditory neuropathyThere were days when Eric would find me on the bathroom floor crying, as it was a lot to process. However, I soon started to take it all in, and I began to talk to many doctors about our next steps. Chance had to get hearing aids, and we had to make sure that they did not work for him prior to getting him cochlear implants. After a few months, we just knew the hearing aids were doing nothing for him.

After we knew hearing aids were not working, Chance then had to get a MRI. That is when we found out that he qualified for cochlear implants. We choose to go with Cochlear for so many reasons. We love how long they have been around, that they stay up to date with technology and we loved that there was a waterproof option1.

The process of learning sound

Child has cochlear implants, who has auditory neuropathySince Chance got his cochlear implants, it has been a slow process but amazing to watch every step. It took about four months for him to want to wear his sound processors every day. Now that he knows he can hear music and noise with them, he wants them on. He can now count to five and can say over 15 words. We find ourselves saying his name just to watch him turn around.

I cannot believe how upset I was when I found out he was deaf. Now, I love everything about it. We have even learned ASL together; he is so smart! He has so much energy, and he makes us laugh every day. He is such a blessing and anyone that meets him falls in love with him.

Our goals for Chance

Child with auditory neuropathy with cochlear implantsHe has so many hobbies. Chance loves the water, and we are at the beach or out on the boat almost every weekend. He is even learning how to wakeboard and has no fear of water!  He loves sports, playing outside, is in school five days a week and is making new friends. Chance even enjoys going on the bus every morning.

We have so many future goals for him!  We would love to see him be able to say 100 words by the end of the year. It would also be great to have him sign while he talks.

Chance has the Nucleus 7 Sound Processors, and we love how small and lightweight they are. The battery stays charged, and it is so easy to take off and on to charge. When Chance is older, we are happy that he can use the Nucleus Smart App! I love that he has this option for him in the future.”

Was your child diagnosed with auditory neuropathy? See how cochlear implants could help them hear.

  1. The Nucleus 7 Sound Processor with Aqua+ and Aqua+ Coil is water resistant to level IP68 of the International Standard IEC60529 when you use a Cochlear Standard Rechargeable Battery Module or Cochlear Compact Rechargeable Battery Module. Refer to the relevant User Guide for more information.
Cara Lippitt
Cara Lippitt is the Public Relations and Marketing Manager at Cochlear Americas. She is responsible for consumer marketing social media and blog content. Cara is inspired by the stories of the recipients that she is able to tell and the incredible journeys they have taken. Cara was born and raised in Colorado and adores the mountains, snow and the world of musical theatre.