April 20, 2011

Doctors Performing Cochlear Implant Surgery Only In It For The Money?

Money 2I am tired of hearing about how all doctors who perform cochlear implant surgery are only in it for the money. I am also sick of hearing about how all doctors and audiologists who suggest cochlear implantation do it strictly to make lots of money. Some will go as far as to say that all doctors and audiologists will push cochlear implantation on all patients who are deaf or hard of hearing, in hopes of making more money. If this is true, why would all of the various audiologists and doctors I have seen in the past strongly advise me not to consider getting a cochlear implant? They all have told me that I am not a candidate for it and that they think it is not worth undergoing surgery on my left side (which is mainly profoundly deaf). They believed that there is a good chance that it would not work since I have gone without any sort of amplification on that side for so long. I remember one told me, because I have been doing relatively well without any sort of amplification there, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."
The only people who tried to encourage me to look into getting a cochlear implant were sales representatives and cochlear implant specialists from major cochlear implant companies.

Read what a parent had to say about the myth that all doctors are only in it for the money:

Myth: Doctors who perform Cochlear Implant surgery are only in it for the money.

Reality: I don't see how this can be true. While many insurance companies do cover Cochlear
Implants, the contractual agreements they have with the implant centers greatly restricts the amounts the Insurance will pay. For example: because of the contractual arrangement our insurance had with our implant center, the final amount they received from the insurance company was less than what the center had to pay for the device itself. No "Big Bucks" were made by the surgeon, the implant center, or the hospital when my son was implanted. His follow-up care (aural rehabilitation and speech processor programming) is provided by his private school, so the implant center doesn't make money with this either. Neither does his school.

From Listen-Up Web's Cochlear Implant Myths & Realities

Even if I was a candidate for cochlear implant surgery, I would not get one for personal reasons. I don't want to undergo surgery and I do not want to be responsible for another hearing device. One hearing aid is enough for me. But, that's me. I don't expect everyone else to feel the same as me or to do the same.


*Photo from Flickr

Related Post:

Stop Saying That Most Audiologists Are Greedy!


  1. I got a CI on my left ear after not wearing anything in it for probably 25 years. I'm actually doing pretty well with it, probably because I do have sound memory. But I agree with the statement, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

    I'm not sure about doctors and audiologists doing this just for the money. In my experience, most seem to genuinely care about their clients. The doctor who did my CI surgery though is a different story. I don't think he is in it for the money, but his bedside manner can use improvement. He is totally against ASL, deaf culture, etc.

  2. The path to becoming a surgeon is rough. It's one of the toughest professions to be in. Whether the doctors are in it for the money or not, they deserve to get paid for their lifelong efforts in pursuing medicine.

  3. The cochlear implant is a huge improvement for those who are good candidates. @Anonymous, deaf culture is a crock. I have several family members who are deaf or severely hearing impaired, including myself. Two of my family members have the implant and they love it. My one brother refuses to get it though citing "deaf culture" and claiming his friends would turn against him if he got it as his reasons. IMO, "deaf culture" is just an excuse to hide from the world. Refusing the implant makes no more sense than a paralyzed man refusing a wheelchair.


Keep it civil.