Download Overcoming Deafness : The Story of Hearing and Language 2014 PDF

Download Overcoming Deafness : The Story of Hearing and Language 2014 PDF
by Ellis Douek  (Author)

Hearing is one of the most empowering of our senses; it enables us to work, socialise and communicate. It's hard to imagine living in a silent world, yet just 60 years ago this was the inevitable outcome for the majority of people with ear disease or language problems. Nowadays, virtually everybody can be helped to some extent and many cured. But how did we get here?
This book tells the fascinating story of science and medicine's winning battle with deafness, covering all the hearing diseases and the progress of their treatment from the beginning of Ellis Douek's career in the 1950s to the present day. Unlike other books on hearing, this covers language disorders as well as the surgery of deafness; it is a book about human communication, discussing music and poetry as well as delving into the medical science.

In our ageing population, hearing disorders are increasingly a part of everyday life; that they are almost always treatable should not be taken for granted. This book should be the first reference for anyone who has experienced hearing loss and would like to know more about hearing and language development, and for professionals in hearing science, medicine and allied fields of interest.

Readership: Professionals dealing with communication disorders and hearing science including Surgeons, Paediatricians, Audiologists, Doctors, Therapists and Teachers

Louis de Bernieres’ novel Captain Corelli’s Mandolinbegins with an old fisherman on a Greek island complaining of deafness in one ear. It is not clear what had brought him to the doctor after years of suffering. On inspection, the doctor saw a pea impacted in the fisherman’s ear canal which must have been there since childhood as it was encrusted with wax and dirt. Since he had only a few tools, the doctor straightened a fishhook, poured water into the fisherman’s ear to soften the pea, and literally fished it out.
The doctor took credit for curing the man but he did not mention the pea that was causing the fisherman’s deafness as that would have provoked amusement and detracted from his success. The doctor’s ingenuity and skill would have been unfairly brushed aside by hilarity if the details had been known. The doctor’s reputation was enhanced and the islanders were comforted by his presence among them. The fisherman, who had never known anyone who had had an operation, enjoyed the attention. Nonetheless, the procedure could well have gone very wrong as damage can easily be caused to the ear when removing foreign bodies.
That incident took place before the Second World War, and though my own department at Guy’s Hospital in London is now equipped with the most advanced technology, our feelings and anxieties are probably similar  to those of the inhabitants of that tiny Mediterranean island, even if our expectations are not

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