For those of us endowed with an able body, it is hard to imagine having to spend eight long years without hearing a sound. And how would it feel to hear your parentsâ€™ voices for the very first time.
This is what happened with Nafiya, an eight-year-old Indian girl born with a hearing impairment. But thanks to doctors in the UAE, she is now able to hear after undergoing a cochlear implant procedure, reported Gulf News.
The little girl and her parents couldn't be happier when the implant was activated for the first time after two weeks of recovery from the operation.
This was the first cochlear implant procedure at the University Hospital Sharjah, which was performed by surgeons Ahmad Munzer Al Waa and Faheem Tadros.
Discussing the procedure, Munzer said: "An electrode is implanted in the inner ear where the child is able to hear sounds for the first time. Gradually, with the help of special software, sounds are adjusted to near normal level.
"This would eventually help Nafiya hear all the sounds and cope with the communication demands," he added.
Sharjah TV sponsored the cost of the procedure for the Indian expatriate girl. A cochlear implant costs about $40,840.
"More similar operations will be conducted as there is an increasing number of infants who are born with hearing impairments," said Tadros. The procedure was very delicate and took a couple of hours.
"Now my daughter can hear us speak. She will listen to music, the birds sing and all the sounds of the world. This is a special day for our family and is one we will never forget," Nafiya's father was quoted as saying.