Today Lisa (our audiologist) performed a routine test of Ethan's implant to make sure that all the 22 electrodes are working and making contact with the auditory nerve.
To her surprise, 3 electrodes had totally shorted out and 2 others were well on their way. She ended up turning off all 5 of them. This is very unusual, in fact they've never seen it with this particular device. His is called the "freedom" and has a reputation for reliability.
The good news is that he is still hearing really well on all frequencies. The bad news is that we don't know why this is happening or what will happen next. Is this a sign of a device failure? If so, then Ethan will go back into surgery and they'll remove the device and put a new one in its place. At this point, the problem isn't severe enough to warrant that, but if the problem gets worse we will have to consider re-implanting.
Not easy news for us to hear. And yet not the worst news we've ever had regarding Ethan.
We were all set to drive home from the hospital, but Ethan and I both needed to do something other than sit in the car for 3 hours. We went to Mike and Audrey's, where we always stay when we're in town. They take great care of us and have seen us through some tough stuff. I finished the night with a piece of banana creme pie, my favorite! Ethan finished the night with a really fun bath supervised by Porter, his favorite dog.