Cochlear Implant Patient Success Story

After his Cochlear Implant, Dale returned to work once again at age 80. 

The Gift of Sound Returns

In 2012, at age 79, Dale Yarbrough from Burkburnett made a decision that would change the rest of his life.

For decades Dale went without hearing well. He missed the days of being able to distinguish similar words, a female’s voice from a male’s, the sound of his favorite music while he drove down the road. Dale’s hearing had progressively gotten worse over time. Due to the 90-95% hearing loss in each of his ears, he made the hard decision to leave his career behind, 15 years ago. He not only lost the companionship of coworkers, but was left unable to socialize with neighbors and friends and most importantly, had a hard time even hearing his wife of nearly 60 years, Kathleen.

Dale described his hearing loss as “just terrible. You can’t understand; you can’t carry on a conversation with anyone because you can’t hear them. “

At a doctor’s office visit, Dale was told that hearing aids would no longer work for him. But there was hope in a procedure new to Wichita Falls – cochlear implants, a hearing device that is surgically implanted, giving the gift of sound back to those that no longer benefit from hearing aids. It wasn’t long before Dale decided this was exactly what he needed in his life.

On April 3, 2012, Dale came to United Regional for the procedure performed by Dr. Jed Grisel. Now, just over a year later, Dale is extremely happy with his improved hearing, but even more so, he is overjoyed with the life that was given back to him.

Dale is finally able to visit with his friends and neighbors again. He enjoys listening to the artists, like Ray Price, that he listened to in his younger years. “It’s not the same as when I was younger – but still nice to hear.” And although Kathleen passed away 19 months ago, he knows that “she would be tickled” that he went through with the operation and that he is back to hearing and doing what he loves, which even includes going back to work.

About three months ago, Dale visited United Supermarket in Burkburnett, where he had worked years ago. The store manager asked from a distance, “Dale, can you hear me?” Dale replied with a smile, “Yes Ma’am.” He was asked if he would consider coming back to work. He did just that.

It is not surprising that Dale receives compliments often from customers and coworkers on how courteous and friendly he is. His amazing personality is shining again.

“I’d recommend it to anybody; everything worked out just right. I couldn’t ask for anything different,” Dale expressed.