Grandmother Jenny Burdge 'thankful' to hear grandsons after life-changing surgery

Enfield Independent: Jenny Burge with her cochlear implant Jenny Burge with her cochlear implant

A grandmother who underwent life-changing surgery 21 years ago is celebrating hearing her grandsons speak for the first time.

Jenny Burdge, who lives in Maxim Road in Winchmore Hill, became deaf aged 15 and was one of the first people in the UK to have a cochlear implant to restore her hearing.

The 57-year-old, who has genetic disorder Pendred syndrome, was not able to hear her son and daughter – now aged 24 and 32, utter their first words.

Mrs Burdge, who was not able to hear using a hearing aid, is elated that she can now hear her grandsons four-year-old Harry and Alex aged ten-months-old grow up.

The grandmother, who is married to husband Peter, said: “When I had my two children I didn’t hear them but having the grandchildren has made me realise how much I missed out on when my own two children; the words they use, the stories they come out with. 

“With the birth of my grandchildren, I feel that I am reliving being a mother again and hearing those beautiful sounds of early childhood that tell you that your baby is happy, or needs attention.

“It’s just a wonderful way to celebrate 21 years of this fantastic technology that has restored some of my hearing. I am very thankful.”

She said every day is a "new day" and she is still hearing sounds that she has never heard before and has increased in confidence now she can hear.

Mrs Burdge set up support network the Home Counties Cochlear Group 12 years ago which allows people to share their experiences of the implant. They meet in Brigadier Hill in Enfield three times a year.

Cochlear implants, which were first used 30 years ago, are electronic devices for adults and children who cannot hear through hearing aids.

Unlike hearing aids, cochlear implants bypass damaged hair cells in the inner ear and stimular the hearing nerve directly.

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