How I got my life back – my hearing has been restored to near-normal

This is an extremely personal note, and I have been waiting a week to write to see if in fact the results were real and lasting. I’m happy to report that they are and I am a changed person as a result of this transformation. Let me tell you a story about my struggle and how I suffered with hearing loss for years. Let me explain how my family and my friends and my career and everything suffered along with it, and what I did to solve it.

Many of you that read WUWT and have met me in person at conferences, speaking engagements, and over the telephone, realize what a struggle everyday life has been for me with an 85% hearing loss. The story begins when I was an infant – I had a series of infections which our local doctor treated with tetracycline, an antibiotic that at the time they did not know would cause long-term hearing loss. It also causes discoloring of your adult teeth in later life. Like with so many drugs, no one quite knew at the time what long-term effects it might have. The product is now [mostly] off the market, however the effects have remained with me and many other people.

By the time I was five years old my mother began to realize that something was not right with my hearing. She would accuse me of not paying attention to her or to be ignoring her when she called me to come in after playing outside. By the time I was 10 years old I needed a hearing aid and for the first time I heard crickets and birds chirping and it rose to a “wow” moment for me. But it did not last and my hearing continued to degenerate. A couple of months after I got my first hearing aid, my father died unexpectedly and thrust me into an even greater personal turmoil.

During high school I got tagged with the stigma of wearing a hearing aid as well as the social isolation that began to creep in. By the time I was in college I needed a second hearing aid on my other ear, because I could not hear lectures and I was having trouble interacting with people. Wearing two hearing aids gave me a binaural advantage and it helped, but again it did not last, and my hearing began to deteriorate further. This was not unexpected, as it was known that such things would happen as a result of the tetracycline damaging the nerve cells of my cochlea.

Along with the trouble I had in college, particularly with the requirements for taking a foreign language in school of science, (well before the Americans with Disabilities Act existed – they had no solution for me) there was a huge social stigma attached and my own self-worth suffered as a result. Through a happy accident with the computer that directed students for employment for the work – study program, I found myself as employed as a faculty research assistant for the school of atmospheric sciences at Purdue University, and it was there that I began to find my calling.

I was employed to help with the research on the tornado simulator re-creating and verifying some of Dr. Theodore Fujita’s science on tornadoes, particularly multiple vortices. I also was tasked with creating, equipping, and constructing the Cherry Lane remote meteorological facility for the University. I was tasked with getting live real-time data back from this facility to display in the hallway at the atmospheric sciences department. This is no small task in 1976 when things like modems, analog-to-digital converters, and real-time data streams were hard to come by.

About the same time the local television station, WLFI-TV, had just put on “Miss Indianapolis 500” to do the local weather report. Her main asset was her ability to look pretty, but it became painfully clear that she had no cognizance of what she was doing, and I wrote a complaint letter to the TV station saying “surely you could find someone more qualified in this college town particularly with the University that has the meteorology department.”

Weeks passed, and I forgot about the letter but a change occurred at the TV station and all the sudden I see a qualified individual, an agricultural meteorologist from the agronomy department doing the weather presentation there. He was competent and concise, but in terms of presentation the pendulum had shifted to the extreme other hand and the delivery was difficult to watch. I hadn’t given it another thought though because I thought that they had paid attention to what I complained about. A couple of months later I ran into this gentleman in the hallway of the meteorology department at Purdue and I ask him how the job was going. And he replied to me that he hated it, he was thinking of quitting, and that he didn’t like the hours, and he didn’t like how he had to work in dark studio 11 o’clock at night. I wished him well and we went our separate ways, and I thought to myself later in the day “gee, I could do that job”.

Being young, naïve, and probably a little bit stupid I went to the television station the next day to apply for the job, I didn’t even call first. I just said I wanted to see the “person in charge of the news”. They brought him to the front desk, and said I want to apply for this job and he looked at me and sized me up there in my best suit with a stupid grin on my face, and said simply “okay let’s see what you got”.

I’d never before been on television with chromakey but I had some experience with a television class and radio class in my high school. And, I had confidence that I could speak in public thanks to reading passages from the Bible at my church in front of the whole congregation. I was told I had a great voice. To my own surprise and to the surprise of the news director, I nailed the audition and they hired me on the spot. And after the first week on the job, some of the fear and self-loathing I had over my hearing loss began to evaporate and I realized that this was my destiny. In broadcasting I didn’t have to listen, I didn’t have to understand speech, I only have to talk. And because of my hearing loss I had developed a deep booming voice, mainly so that I could hear my own voice, and it was a major major asset for a broadcaster. All of a sudden I went from being pained, shy, and socially isolated to being a person who began to emerge into the light.

But, let me tell you my friends the media business is a lonely one. Friendships don’t easily form, because people climb the ladder and are very competitive and they think to themselves “I’m only going to be here a year or two so why should I form friendships when I just have to abandon them very soon”.

So, what does all of this have to do with my hearing loss? Well it has to do with the fact that hearing loss is a terrible social isolation. People that are blind actually do better socially than people with severe hearing loss. And many people who have severe hearing loss such as myself get symptoms that further exacerbates the social isolation. Much of my life over the past 40 years has been a great deal of social isolation. But it has gotten worse lately as my hearing deteriorated further in 2008 and it was about that time that I discovered that blogging opened a whole new world for me and allowed me to form friendships with people around the world – something I’ve never experienced before. Even though I was no longer on television, blogging became my social outlet while my hearing suffered further.

The downside of all of this was that blogging took time away from my family, and my due to the continual deterioration of my hearing I became a social hermit. My family suffered as a result of this and I recognize now how much I’ve lost due to this situation.  I cringe now, when I think of the pain I’ve caused my own family, due to that isolation. I credit my ex-wife for giving me the “giant kick in the ass” that led to the transformation that I experienced a week ago in Minneapolis Minnesota at a company called Starkey laboratories and their hearing foundation which serves people worldwide.

On October 27th, I walked in to the doors of the Starkey hearing foundation and I asked for help, and they gave it without hesitation. But, after going to the initial evaluation the news was not good, not good at all. My hearing had deteriorated into what would be called the profound loss category and you can see this in the photo below of my hearing test that was administered that morning.

IMG_20141027_072951As you can see the test results were pretty grim. And when the consultant told me that he wasn’t sure he could do much for me without going to large behind the ear hearing aids or some other solution. My heart sank. I had been able to eliminate part of my social stigma by going to what’s called CIC hearing aids which stand for “completely in canal”, but now I was going to have to deal with the stigma of the behind the ear aids that I dealt with as a student and in early adult life. But I wouldn’t accept no for an answer, and I pleaded with the consultant, Neil, to create new hearing aids in the style that I was currently wearing. His major concern was that they would go into constant feedback given the sound pressure levels that I needed as well as the proximity of the microphone and the speaker over such a short distance inside my ear canal. But I reminded him that technology has advanced and that the new feedback suppression systems as well as other advances might give me a chance and we had a good talk about it. He agreed to help me.

This section of the campus at the Starkey Laboratories is called the Center for Excellence and indeed it is, because this is where miracles are performed every day by a staff of caring and talented people that exist nowhere else in the world.

IMG_20141027_064645The walls are lined with photographs, autographs, and letters from heads of state, celebrities, astronauts, the Pope, and even a letter from Mother Teresa thanking the man that formed this company and the miracle that it produces for restoring their hearing. That  man’s name is Bill Austin and I got introduced to him almost a decade ago thanks to a business deal that never came to fruition related to a videoconferencing system with an otoscope envisioned by my friend Kris Koenig.

I never made that sale because right in the middle of the presentation I was making Bill Austin stood up and said “okay this demonstration is over”, and I thought I had done something terribly wrong. The real fact was Bill was tired of me not being able to understand his questions clearly and so he wanted to create some new hearing aids for me because he could tell I was struggling. That’s the kind of man he is. Back then technology for hearing aids hadn’t changed all that much. But they were a great improvement as were the ones that I received again in 2008.

Below are some of the photos on the wall and the letters on the wall at the Center for Excellence, a testament to their work. This is just one panel of dozens there.


There are also dozens of photographs, no make that hundreds, of children around the world that have been helped by this man and the foundation he has started to spread goodness and the American initiative throughout the world.

Bill wasn’t in that day, he was off in Afghanistan fitting children who had their hearing damaged by the ravages of war with new hearing aids to help them in their own social isolations.

The amazing thing about Starkey Laboratories Center for Excellence is that they are able to build solutions right there on the spot.

And so after going to the tests, the pleading and bargaining over the design, the waiting began. They were manufacturing hearing aids custom to my problem, and with the latest technology available nowhere else in the world. Below are a couple of photos of the facility and the team of people who made this possible.

IMG_20141027_083511 IMG_20141027_081425

I was encouraged but was bracing myself for failure, hoping that these new hearing aids would not go into constant feedback in my ears, making them useless.

Nearly five hours later I had my new hearing aids. The most amazing part to me was that these tiny hearing aids that fit entirely inside my ear contained a complete computer and digital signal processing system. Like Windows they even have a bootup sound when you turn them on and a remote control and a direct to cell phone Bluetooth system that makes being able to hear on the telephone no longer a chore.

The next step was customization to fix the booming and the and the small spikes of pain from the extreme sound pressure levels that I had to endure from the powerful amplifiers. Everything is computerized now & tuning became simply a matter of a few mouse clicks thanks to Dr. Suma and her expertise. This is what my restoration curve looks like:

IMG_20141028_070550There was one more test to perform. We needed to find out how the new aids did to restore my hearing. The result is below.


IMG_20141027_131550Compare that to my original graph from the morning and you can imagine the elation that I experienced seeing that.

And so, with my solution complete, I went back to the hotel. Using the remote control I had been provided, I had to turn my hearing aids down to drive the car because the road noise was deafening. And when I got in the hotel, I decided the first thing I should do is celebrate a bit so I went to the bar to have a drink. It was there that I confronted my worst nightmare and my biggest test of whether these would actually help me or not: a tiny little blonde woman who was the bartender. She could not have been more than 5 feet tall.

The World Series game was on the TV and there were a lot of people in the bar and there was a lot of noise, and I dreaded the moment where I was going to have to speak to this tiny little woman because tiny women have tiny voices and tiny voices are often high-pitched and very difficult for me to comprehend. So, my test was on and she spoke to me and a miracle occurred: she asked me what I wanted and I told her I wanted a “Manhattan on the rocks” and then she asked me what kind of Bourbon I wanted it and I was able to say with pride exactly what I wanted. She returned a few minutes later with a drink and then asked me if I wanted to order something to eat and asked me if I wanted to hear the specials for today. For decades I’ve never heard what the specials have been in restaurants – they are just something that I waited for it to be over, but this time I heard them all. I thanked her, and read the menu and made my decision as to what I wanted. And I motioned her to come over when she asked if I was ready to order and I said yes and I proceeded to tell her what I wanted with some small modifications.

Now you have to understand that this normal mundane everyday event that most of you reading take for granted is something that would strike terror in my psyche every time I have to go through this. But this time something amazing happened, something I hadn’t anticipated. You see, because I couldn’t hear myself I’d always had this booming voice and to some people that booming voice was offputting even though it was great for being a broadcaster. Now, my voice is much lower in volume. And as I described my order to this tiny little blonde woman who was the bartender she leaned over to me and said “can you repeat that”?

This was a moment I’ll remember forever. All of a sudden the tables were turned, and I was thrilled beyond imagination to be able to repeat something for someone else. I knew then that a transformation that occurred and I made a short and simple post to my Facebook page via my phone. It read:

epic_hearing-FBAnd to my amazement dozens and then hundreds of accolades and comments started pouring in while I was sitting there at the bar. I began to cry and tears were streaming down my face. I was so happy and I couldn’t stop it because the weight and pain of the last 40 years were suddenly lifted from me. It truly was epic.

There were two people sitting at the end corner of the bar who looked at me and asked with concern, “Sir, are you okay?”  I proceeded to tell them what happened and I had a glorious conversation with two people who I had never met and I understood every word. They were thrilled for me.

I can’t begin to tell you what that felt like. And it kept getting better as I learned to be able to tune these new hearing aids to situations and it made comprehension even easier. The next day I posted this on my Facebook page:

epic_hearing-FB2I had feared that maybe this was just the temporary gain, but now nearly a week later my comprehension gains continue, and I am healed in more ways than one.

You see, the inability to hear on a daily basis during normal simple everyday things like ordering a cup of coffee at Starbucks or going through a drive-through to order food to take home to my family were challenges that I often failed, and it made me frustrated and angry all the time. This affected people around me and especially the people I hold most dear; my own family. Now all of that is gone and I’m like an entirely new person because of this transformation.

My ability to hear on the telephone has been transformed too. These new hearing aids have direct Bluetooth connections and so I am able to carry on a conversation using both ears with my cell phone. The fidelity is phenomenal and my comprehension is now nearly perfect where maybe before I could pick up 50% on a good day. This new technology is beyond what I could have imagined.

I had to share this with you because I know that this story will help people. While there are many good local hearing aid professionals in towns and cities around the United States and the world, the Starkey laboratories Center for Excellence is a place where miracles happen and one happened for me. I can imagine that almost everyone reading this has a member of their family or friends who suffer from hearing loss and they are afraid to deal with it or find it difficult to get the proper solution. I urge you to urge them to seek out a solution as I did. It is truly life-changing.

I spent several thousand dollars for this solution, and it is the best money I have ever spent. Don’t let the cost scare you if you need help, there are ways of overcoming financial difficulty and the results will pay you back ten-fold.

Thank you for reading. If you’d like more information please contact:

I will be off-line for most of today doing some work training some people on some software and for the first time in my life I look forward to doing it.



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November 5, 2014 7:59 am

We are all so happy for you Anthony!! ☺
Regards from Canada

Mike Smith
Reply to  Clive
November 5, 2014 9:31 am

Hear hear 🙂

Reply to  Mike Smith
November 6, 2014 1:19 am

Fantastic and thanks for sharing

Reply to  Mike Smith
November 6, 2014 1:48 am

:~) !!!

Reply to  Mike Smith
November 6, 2014 10:39 am

Congtratulations Mr. Watts.
Now, what Musical instrument do want to learn?

Reply to  Clive
November 5, 2014 11:32 am

+ lots & lots
And inspiring.
I do hope those who tweet, Facebook, etc. pass this on.
[& I do wish I had the time to get technologically involved, to Tweet, to Facebook, Instagram (is that right?) and all . . . .]

Reply to  Auto
November 6, 2014 3:41 pm

Not enough stars Anthony for your personal post post, I have to add something to this if you allow me ?. I had cataract surgery done in the past little while with the same sort of things happening to me, after the surgeries it is like seeing a new world, for those of you that have ever decreasing eye sight get it done!!

Reply to  Clive
November 5, 2014 8:50 pm

Congrats from India too!

Reply to  AntonyIndia
November 5, 2014 11:49 pm


Reply to  AntonyIndia
November 6, 2014 4:24 am

…….and from Greece Συγχαρητήρια.

Julie near Chicago
Reply to  AntonyIndia
November 6, 2014 4:10 pm

And from Near Chicago! I am so very happy for you!

Reply to  Clive
November 6, 2014 5:24 am

Anthony, that is one of the most deeply touching things I’ve ever read. It made me thank God for you and thank you for your blog. Congratulations!

November 5, 2014 8:01 am

Congratulations. This is proof positive that a technological society is needed for the betterment of mankind.

November 5, 2014 8:02 am

Great, now you can enjoy your children’s laughter.

November 5, 2014 8:02 am

Congratulations!!!…. unfortunately now you will not only read but also hear (yes, hear not listen) to your detractors.
Wishing you a long and lasting hearing health

Reply to  Francisco
November 5, 2014 11:54 am

He can always turn them down with the remote.

Reply to  Francisco
November 5, 2014 8:10 pm

The French have a saying “il vaut mieux entendre que d’être sourd”, roughly translatable as “hearing that crap barely beats being deaf”…

Reply to  kalya22
November 5, 2014 8:12 pm

… sorry! It should be “Il vaut mieux entendre ça que d’être sourd”

November 5, 2014 8:03 am

That’s fantastic, Antony, great. I’m so happy for you.

John Towers
November 5, 2014 8:04 am

Congratulations on your hearing and on a great story as background

Jimmy Haigh.
November 5, 2014 8:05 am

Magic. Probably the best ever post on WUWT. And that is saying something.
We ain’t seen nuthin’ yet – just wait until you get into top gear!

Reply to  Jimmy Haigh.
November 5, 2014 8:17 am

I couldn’t agree more.
Congrats, Anthony…reading this brought tears to this guy’s eyes.

Bob B.
Reply to  jimmaine
November 5, 2014 11:45 am


Tom Bakewell KE7AVZ
November 5, 2014 8:08 am

Good sir, you are an inspiration to many and a wonderful gift to my life.

November 5, 2014 8:08 am

This is an amazing story. Congratulations

November 5, 2014 8:09 am

Congratulations and continued good hearing. I wish I could get my father to have his hearing enhanced but he’s just too stubborn and insists the world continue to repeat itself.

Reply to  harkin
November 8, 2014 10:06 pm

His case may not have been as life-long as Anthony’s.
In general, hearing decreases as one ages, and depending on exposure to noise, the degradation may increase well past what is “normal” for aging..
The loss may be significant, but because it occurs over time, one tends to adapt.
Guess I’ll have to take my kids’ advice, and see a doctor in stead of continually asking “What did you say?”

Reply to  Rascal
November 8, 2014 10:28 pm

Oops! Congratulations, Anthony, your story did more than share with us your good news, you showed us how to “make lemonade, when you get stuck with lemons”.
In spite of your difficulties from childhood on, you didn’t let them hold you back-you started one of the most read, if not THE most read scientific blog; I believe that your surface stations project was a significant exposure of the fallacy of global warming cult
I look forward to more good stuff!

November 5, 2014 8:09 am

This is an incredible story, and I am so happy for you Anthony.

November 5, 2014 8:09 am

Excellent news Anthony! Very happy for you! But I also want to say that your trials, frustrations and pain have, in a way, brought about this site, which is a great feat few would have had the tenacity and focus to build up. I think your hearing loss was instrumental in forging that and, by way of being a foil to the corrupt and scientifically sloppy, makes the world a better place. Getting your hearing back is just desserts to that work.

November 5, 2014 8:09 am

Out-freaking standing. This is an extraordinary read. I’ve been wondering what had been done to restore your hearing, and the glimpses into the professional and personal difficulties you’ve had to endure make the outcome all the more moving — those are manly tears on my cheeks. Welcome back to the land of the hearing, Anthony!

Reply to  psion (@psion)
November 5, 2014 10:31 am

Yes, you adorable men-creatures, it is manly to cry sometimes.
As one of those hundreds of folks who met you at a conference, Anthony, I am ecstatic. At least you could hear at all and we did have a conversation, though it was difficult.
This article made me think: loud noises makes for deafness, and sounds have had to be very loud for you to hear them. That is why your hearing has kept getting worse. Do.not overuse your new miracle. I want you to enjoy this blessing as long as possible.
This is the era of stem cells. Within 5 to 20 years, doctors will restore hearing in old pets by stem cells and when they get good enough, they will restore natural hearing in people like you.

M Courtney
Reply to  psion (@psion)
November 5, 2014 11:47 am

I confess that there is a little moisture in my eyes as well.
Must be all the staring at the computer screens.
Congratulations Mr Watts.
And enjoy hearing your family talk to and around you.

Dr. Paul Mackey
Reply to  M Courtney
November 6, 2014 12:56 am

Indeed. I am thrilled for you, and thanks for the uplifting post!

Crispin in Waterloo but really in Beijing
Reply to  M Courtney
November 6, 2014 4:21 am


Reply to  M Courtney
November 8, 2014 10:32 pm

What a Thanksgiving you have to look forward to!

Kevin Benn
November 5, 2014 8:09 am

Thankyou Anthony for your heart-rending, touching and finally joyous story!
Welcome back, in every sense!

Mike Bromley the Kurd
November 5, 2014 8:10 am

That, in some rarely-used California Parlance (at least for this site), is just plain groovy.

November 5, 2014 8:11 am

That is such fantastic news. I am so happy for you.

November 5, 2014 8:11 am

As somebody heading down a similar but much less pronounced curve, I understand how you feel. Makes me continue to believe in happy endings
Enjoy the new lease of life!

November 5, 2014 8:11 am

Anthony, I am truly happy for you. Your story made my eyes water a bit. Congratulations and continued success.

Reply to  Skeptical
November 5, 2014 10:09 am

My feelings and response to the Anthony’s tale of his hearing recovery.

November 5, 2014 8:12 am

Bloody marvellous, Mr W.
Fantastic news for you.

Robert Doyle
November 5, 2014 8:12 am

May God bless you.
Anthony, enjoy each day and keep the knowledge that, both the technology AND the medical science
will offer even better solutions in the coming years.
Best Regards,

November 5, 2014 8:12 am

Amazing story and a fantastic outcome…and I could not be happier for you, especially overcoming the challenges and stigmas. I had emotions welling up in me as you talked about the experience with the bartender. It was like watching the happy ending of an epic, dramatic film as tears fill your eyes.
I can’t imagine what you have been through, but you clearly are a better man for excelling after jumping so many hurdles along the way. This is a story that will give hope to so many others in similar situations.
Keep up the great attitude and great work Anthony!

November 5, 2014 8:13 am

Great news Anthony – I’m so very pleased for you.

November 5, 2014 8:13 am

What is there to say about something like this except thank God, American innovation and your bride for not giving up.

Reply to  mkelly
November 5, 2014 9:31 pm


November 5, 2014 8:15 am

As someone who is losing his hearing (luckily only in one ear) great news! Go You 🙂

Don K
November 5, 2014 8:15 am

Congratulations Anthony.

November 5, 2014 8:15 am

I am so happy for you. BUT don’t stop blogging 🙂

Werner Brozek
Reply to  John Powers
November 6, 2014 1:24 pm

I agree!

November 5, 2014 8:15 am

The alt-ability rights (social justice warrior) drones want to make THIS illegal!

November 5, 2014 8:15 am

Congratulations! What a spectacular gift!

Bob MacLean
November 5, 2014 8:16 am

One of the most enjoyable posts I’ve read over the years I’ve been following Wattsupwiththat. Congratulations Anthony! I’m delighted for you.

November 5, 2014 8:16 am

Great news Anthony. I too live a life made better with Starkey devices.

Vince Causey
November 5, 2014 8:16 am

Absolutely fantastic. Really pleased for you Anthony.

November 5, 2014 8:17 am

Wonderful News. I have enjoyed you site daily for a decade and this is my first post.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Lindsay Richards
November 5, 2014 6:01 pm

Don’t let it be your last! Keep on posting!

November 5, 2014 8:17 am

That’s wonderful news!
Terry Oldberg

Jack Cowper
November 5, 2014 8:18 am

That’s splendid news Anthony, I hope this story enables others to seek the help you have had.

Leo Morgan
November 5, 2014 8:18 am

I’m thrilled for you.
I’m also late with the good news. Behind Paul, Russell, Chris and 177 others. i must sign up to your Facebook page too.
But this is about you, not me.
Such wonderful news!

November 5, 2014 8:18 am

Anthony, that is great to hear. And I do mean hear. My hearing is not as damaged as yours was, but it was in the range of I was spending 50% of my effort lip reading. The aids I had previously had were awful. I just did not bother to wear them because of that. My audiologist made the comment that “If I had those aids, I would not bother to wear them either.” Newest generation has made all the difference in the world. A long, long, long, long way from my Dad’s 1 transistor hearing aid glasses. Mine are still BTE, but the processing power in them has made all the difference. Also the fact that I got molds done so that I could shove more out the speakers without feedback.
I have not walked in your shoes, but I do know the road. Enjoy stuff. Music is now possible for me. Before the distortion was horrid, no matter what I did with the equalizer on the computer.
Hear, hear!!!

Reply to  ShrNfr
November 5, 2014 8:22 am

btw, you will love the bluetooth feature beyond your wildest dreams. You now have a set of wireless earphones for your computer/iPad/iPhone/etc. I spend most of my day listening to music at the machine now. No, the rock your gut bass is not possible with these, but it sounds dam better than it ever used to.

November 5, 2014 8:18 am

What a blessing for you Anthony….well deserved. We have been hearing you well for years, now you can as well. Very happy for you

November 5, 2014 8:19 am

Fantastic. I appreciate this personal post and share your joy.

November 5, 2014 8:19 am

¡¡¡ Enhorabuena y Un abrazo !!!
Great story. Especially, knowing it is for real.

November 5, 2014 8:20 am

Wow! Good job!

November 5, 2014 8:22 am

How far is stem cells implants behind? Great to hear this news.

November 5, 2014 8:22 am

i’ve been wearing hearing aids since college (about 20 years now) and just got new CiCs a few months ago. i’m sure you already know this but it will take a few weeks for your brain to adjust the new sounds you’re hearing. what model did you get?

November 5, 2014 8:23 am

Congratulations Anthony! Great story and I hope it benefits others. I shared it everywhere… 🙂

November 5, 2014 8:24 am

“This is an extremely personal note…”
Your work is important to the world, so it means a lot to everybody. Glad to hear (pun intended) it’s working!

Steve Keohane
November 5, 2014 8:25 am

Congratulations Anthony!!!! God Bless you.

José Tomás
November 5, 2014 8:25 am

Your personal history illustrates that thing about God writing straight with crooked lines…

Ron Sinclair
November 5, 2014 8:25 am

Congratulations Anthony. Your news is wonderful. As a fellow sufferer of severe hearing loss, I certainly know and appreciate what you have gone through. So nice to learn that Starkey has an answer. Perhaps a trip to their location from here in the Toronto area is in order.

John Boles
November 5, 2014 8:26 am

CONGRATULATIONS! Now you can listen for “The Hum” which seems to be a big internet mystery, but is really just the dull roar/rumble of traffic in the distance. Good for you Anthony, I am happy for you, and thanks for what you are doing!

November 5, 2014 8:27 am

Maybe a climatic debate monster has now been unleashed.

Jimmy Haigh
Reply to  nc
November 5, 2014 8:49 am


David Schofield
November 5, 2014 8:27 am

Brilliant news!

November 5, 2014 8:29 am

Your story reduced me to tears. WUWT is my go-to site, and I spend more time online here than anywhere. I’m really happy for you.
All the best.

Janice Moore
November 5, 2014 8:29 am

“… and I realized that this was my destiny.”
Anthony, thank you for sharing that beautifully candid report of your WONDERFUL NEWS! I know, I know, lol, I DON’T NEED TO SHOUT!
But, I AM! Because I am so happy for you!
(and I’ve been praying for a long time!!!)
Tears. There are so many people out there with tears that still need to be cried… . THAT was in itself a gift. Just wonderful.
You, Anthony, in “{your} best suit with a stupid grin on {your} face,” are remarkably appealing. You have a gift.
Q: Would WUWT be here, but for your hearing impairment?
Alexander Graham Bell would not have gone into the research he did had his brother not been deaf… .
God works in mysterious ways…. and, truly, “works all things together for good.”


(and thanks for these neat blockquotes!)
With love and gratitude,
P.S. Speaking of socializing….. pick a place and a time and let your WUWT friends meet you! You’re not all that far from San Francisco… . Some would even get on a plane. A “WUWT Holiday Gathering” (no host). Just a thought… .

Reply to  Janice Moore
November 5, 2014 1:06 pm

It’s a lot of fun meeting people face to face when you’ve spent years communicating solely through the internet. I organized a meet for a few of my friends from bbs and it was truly delightful! SanFran’s a little far for us East Coasters, though, so I’m thinking…DC? 🙂 Maybe we could all visit EPA headquarters or something…LOL!

November 5, 2014 8:30 am

Excellent news, and an excellent story. Thanks for writing this Anthony.

November 5, 2014 8:30 am

Thanks Anthony, My wife’s hippy dippy loud music days have destroyed her hearing – perhaps there is hope

Reply to  William E Heritage
November 7, 2014 8:18 am

My wife has an appointment Monday morning 11/10/2014

Bob Thompson
November 5, 2014 8:31 am

How wonderful!! Now I’m choked up…

Mark Bofill
November 5, 2014 8:31 am

Congratulations! I couldn’t be more pleased for you. 🙂

November 5, 2014 8:31 am

A wonderful story! Not only of your improved situation, but of the company you praised.

November 5, 2014 8:32 am

Good show. Will check out the Starkey links you posted, thanks.
Am totally deaf in my left ear and 80% deaf in the right ear, Wear a large behind the ear Danalogic hearing aid. No remote control. Sounds like a good idea because I often want to adjust the tone. Biggest problem is tinnitus. Bit like a steam engine just behind me. Crowded conversations are not something I can join in.

Reply to  Richard111
November 5, 2014 12:37 pm

Yes, what can they do for tinnitus? How can a hearing aid, no matter how sophisticated, help when the sound it produces is being overridden and masked by the tinnitus produced by the damaged cilia?

Reply to  brians356
November 5, 2014 1:58 pm

When I got my hearing aids, one of the main drivers for me was a vague hope that it could help reduce the intrusiveness of my tinnitus. Not sure that’s really occurred, but I do tend to notice it less when I have them in than when I have them out. (Completely anecdotal, highly personalized, and subjective data point.)

November 5, 2014 8:32 am

At one point I was “profoundly deaf” too. After several surgeries, I can now “pass as normal”. It is a wonderful experience. Glad you get to enjoy it!
Unfortunately for me, the damage to my hearing was physical. That has left me strongly dependent on ear plugs in high noise environments ( or I get a load of ringing in the ears…). So I completely understand that “Loud bar, no idea what they said the specials were, order something obvious like a burger and move on” moment.
I learned to partially lip-read as a coping mechanism. It helps but is not enough. I also had one very positive result. I met my (then ‘future’) spouse in a sign language class. We’ve since had several such classes together.
My hearing has since improved some (one day I noticed I was hearing key clicks and such again…) though hers has decreased. (I think eventually we will meet in the middle 😉
One concern I’d have for hearing aids with high sound levels is the potential for long term nerve damage… so enjoy them, but you might want to ration the use….
Oh, and one other note: Tetracycline is still in common use (often to treat acne). It is just the use in kids that is cut back. Also several variant drugs like doxycycline are used (no idea if the hearing impact is changed) and I’ve used that in the last few years for rosacea.
From one member of the (semi) Deaf Community to another: Congratulations and best wishes for a long lasting result.

Mike Singleton
November 5, 2014 8:32 am

Fantastic news Anthony, so very happy for you.
I understand the “anger”, it reminds me of the time I had back surgery to correct a nerve impingement that had caused me chronic and then acute pain for some 15 years. The joy of waking up from the surgery and to be pain free, to be able to play with my children, to not be permanently bad tempered, I’ll never forget it.
Enjoy your new life.

November 5, 2014 8:32 am

As someone with just minor hearing loss, I can still appreciate this wonderful development. Even minor loss can frustrate the bejesus out of someone in certain situations. Congrats.

November 5, 2014 8:32 am

Wonderful news! Congratulations! But are you sure the antibiotic was tetracycline? Tetracycline has saved me on a couple of occasions years ago, so I got interested, but found nothing on hearing loss as an adverse effect.

Reply to  Espen
November 5, 2014 8:49 am

Information on the ototoxicity of many drugs is quite sketchy. Drugs in the Tetracycline family are no exception. Here is what I can tell you about them.
The Tetracycline family of antibiotics includes drugs such as Tetracycline, Chlortetracycline, Doxycycline and Minocycline to name some of the more common ones.
Often drugs in the same family have much the same ototoxic properties. Thus, if Tetracycline did indeed damage your ears, you could expect more damage from Doxycycline.
Although Tetracycline and Doxycycline are not listed in the Physicians’ Desk Reference (PDR) as causing hearing loss, Minocycline is. However, we get a different story when looking through the Canadian equivalent–the Compendium of Pharmaceuticals and Specialties (CPS). There we find Tetracycline, but not Doxycycline or Minocycline listed as causing hearing loss.
From that, it would appear that hearing loss is not a big problem with the drugs in the Tetracycline family. As you have already noted, the Tetracycline family is generally not thought to be all that ototoxic–at least to most people. However, there are a number of exceptions. Some people do indeed suffer from hearing loss after taking one of the Tetracyclines. I have had several people contact me in this regard.
For example, one man had a severe ototoxic reaction to Tetracycline that left him with a severe/profound hearing loss in both ears.
Another man took Chlortetracycline for a strep throat that left him with a permanent hearing loss. Yet another man took Doxycycline for a urinary tract infection and lost much of his hearing as a result. Still another man took Doxycycline for 10 days to treat his cold. He reported, “the hearing in my already-impaired right ear suddenly reduced to virtually zero and remains there.”

So it happens, just not 100% of the time… (and folks wonder why I’m cautious about taking ANY medicine…)

Reply to  E.M.Smith
November 5, 2014 9:52 am

Depending on when you are born, you may still be thankful that they were around. If I had been born 5-10 years earlier, I would not have survived childhood without the various cyclines, mycins, etc.
Believe me, hearing loss in the event of death is permanent. We know better these days, so there better drugs for most stuff.

Reply to  E.M.Smith
November 5, 2014 2:35 pm

My father, an MD, was horrified in the late 40’s when he found that osteopaths (and others) were prescribing antibiotics for colds.

Tom R
November 5, 2014 8:33 am

All those onions….
I am so happy for you Anthony!!!!

November 5, 2014 8:33 am

That is truly awesome Anthony!
All the best to you!
Regards Ed

Ralph Hayburn
November 5, 2014 8:34 am

Wonderful story, Anthony. Couldn’t have happened to a better person.

Steven Miller
November 5, 2014 8:35 am

Thank you so much for this great news! My grandfather had nearly complete hearing loss after surviving multiple bombing missions during WWII. I never considered how difficult these types of social situations must have been for him. I have my own struggles with tinnitus and am accused frequently by my wife of not listening to her and having the volume on the TV up too high.
Thank you again for your work on the web page. It has made the biggest difference in this struggle against this global warming insanity… I believe that your efforts have made a large impact and have helped so many realize that they have to look a little deeper than what is reported by the media. I also credit your efforts to be at least partially responsible for the change in political tides we have seen nearly everywhere other than our homes on the left coast.

Jeff (of Colorado)
November 5, 2014 8:36 am

Congrats! Spend some time just listening to your wife over coffee each morning, it’s a gift you can now give her. Did not know about hearing and tetracycline, thanks.

JD Ohio
November 5, 2014 8:36 am

I am very happy for you as well as for other people who will benefit from this technology.
My deceased wife was a Chinese audiologist. While in China she came across a poor Chinese couple who had adopted a severely hearing impaired child. (In the Chinese context, this was an amazingly generous and courageous act.) To save money for the couple, she suggested to a Chinese audiologist, who was treating the child that te child only be fitted with one hearing aid. To increase his profits, the audiologist insisted on installing 2 hearing aids .(A sickenly venal and greedy act.)
I hope that that child and his parents will benefit from the technology that has helped you so much,

Janice Moore
November 5, 2014 8:37 am

Some of the sweetest music I know… for you, Anthony.
“Romance in F Major” — Ludwig von Beethoven

Beethoven was deaf.

stan stendera
Reply to  Janice Moore
November 6, 2014 6:40 am

Thank you Janice. 1,000,000,000 thumbs up. It so nice to see you posting again. You have been AWOL. You have been missed, by me at least, and I suspect others. If Anthony has an open thread this weekend I will write a comment about the FANTASTIC news of his regaining his hearing. I have [too] big an ego to join the cacophony of joy in this thread. One thing, however, I have noticed in this thread is the floating of an idea I have had for awhile. Simply a meeting in Vegas, maybe, of the WUWT regulars and old guard. I would move heaven and earth to attend. and I suspect you would. And I’m not a joiner.

Janice Moore
Reply to  stan stendera
November 6, 2014 3:12 pm

Mister Stendera!
I responded ENTHUSIASTICALLY to your kind greeting of about 3 days ago here:
So very nice to be missed. How kind of you to say so.
And how are: Libby? The birds on the railing? Schmidt? (ugh)
I LOVE the idea of us all getting together… but, please, NOT Vegas — what a horrible place. And, besides, unfortunately, I could not realistically attend a gathering that far away. San Francisco, I could do.

@EVERYBODY — Organize a WUWT gathering
(all you need are: 1) Place: 2) Time; 3) “Hello My Name Is: __ ” sticker name tags (at any office supply store))
in your part of the world and, if it is far from Chico, California, USA, raise the money to fly Anthony there!

Guess my ego is BIGGER thank yours, dear Stanley Stendera. I’m not always available to participate in the weekend open threads, so, here I am!
Take care,
… could you….. possibly…………….. ACKNOWLEDGE THIS?? (grr)

November 5, 2014 8:37 am

Anthony, congratulations!
A tremendously personal story, and one that highlights both the strength of the human spirit and the power of real, empirical, lab-based, repeatable, bench science.
Thank you so much for being willing to share.

Robert W Turner
November 5, 2014 8:39 am


November 5, 2014 8:39 am

What incredible news, Anthony!
Congratulations! I can’t imagine what it must have been like to go through life being hearing impaired.
I’m so happy for you!

November 5, 2014 8:39 am

So happy to hear of your good fortune. I don’t know you personally, but love the work you are doing. God’s speed.

November 5, 2014 8:40 am

What an amazing story. Congratulations!!!

George Gillan
November 5, 2014 8:41 am

Awesome, Anthony!

November 5, 2014 8:41 am

This is such great news – well done! Isn’t science great 😉

Reply to  cartoonsbyjosh
November 5, 2014 9:12 am

Especially that real science !!!
Fantastic news Anthony. Enjoy your new world.

November 5, 2014 8:41 am

LOL I remember leaving the audiologists and wondering if people in the offices along the hallway knew I could hear what they were saying. I felt like I was ease dropping.
Again righteous news is righteous man.

November 5, 2014 8:42 am

I actually originally trained to be a concert pianist before entering the atmospheric sciences (and before my current life in finance). This story shared here really affected me as I have also had a hearing loss, not as profound as what Anthony has experienced, but very frightening for someone who is still active in the music world. I can relate to the hating of the problem and the frustration – for example, I do not even bother to try and have conversations in restaurants because I cannot understand anyone and the repeated “What did you say?” questions get too embarrassing after time. Anyone with a hearing loss knows exactly what I am talking about.
Thank you for sharing this Anthony. Since I already live in Minneapolis, I am going to pay a visit to the Starkey Laboratories and see if I can too get out of this not fun problem to have. A big fear of mine has always been how hearing aids can distort how music sounds – and seeing the technology here, maybe I can get rid of the fear now.

Tony McGough
November 5, 2014 8:42 am

Good for you, young sir. Thanks be to God for good and caring medics – and the technology they use.

November 5, 2014 8:44 am

Fantastic stuff … sometimes science does in fact work!

November 5, 2014 8:44 am

Anthony, I have been following your site for 3 years now. I think I have commented three times in the last three years. I really appreciate what you and the WUWT folks do and I enjoy the site tremendously. Congratulations on regaining your hearing. I suffer from pretty much the same thing you have experienced. It is extremely tough, especially when the ones you love get frustrated with you because you can’t hear. It’s tough to cope with. I may have to check into the Starkey lab myself…. Thanks for sharing!

November 5, 2014 8:45 am

Congratulations. It’s nice to know that good things still happen to good people.

November 5, 2014 8:45 am

Congrats, Anthony. After you’re done with the training class, take the rest of the day off.
Go do something fun.

Power Grab
November 5, 2014 8:45 am

This is wonderful news! I’m so happy for you! 🙂

November 5, 2014 8:46 am

Best WUWT story ever.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Oldseadog
November 5, 2014 8:49 am


Steve (Paris)
Reply to  Janice Moore
November 5, 2014 12:00 pm

Plus 2

John Endicott
November 5, 2014 8:46 am

Excellent news Anthony, I’m so glad for you.

November 5, 2014 8:46 am

Thanks for sharing this really happy news.
Enjoy rediscovering the world’s beautiful sounds.
(But please keep blogging!)

November 5, 2014 8:47 am

Wonderful. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Doug Hilliard
November 5, 2014 8:48 am

Very happy for you Anthony; thanks for telling your story and enjoy the new experience!

November 5, 2014 8:50 am

The work you do is so important to so many of us. I had no idea of the struggles you were going through. Yours is a great story and will help many people. Thank you, Anthony, for being a focal point for truth about climate, and for sharing your story.

November 5, 2014 8:50 am

Hearing aids aren’t cheap, so “several thousand” doesn’t sound like all that much, considering, especially if it works as well as you say. I may have to take my dad, there, as I live just a couple of miles away from this place.
What an inspiring story!

Dave in Canmore
November 5, 2014 8:51 am

A beautiful story, thank you for sharing it.

Martin Rettig
November 5, 2014 8:52 am

Fantastic news Anthony! I was deaf now I hear, Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound.

November 5, 2014 8:52 am

That is just awesome news!
So this last spring and summer, while I was working on the house during all the wet weather, off in the distance as the sounds of thunderstorms approached several wild turkeys would gobble at the thunder. I was thinking about you and how much you would enjoy that. Should your travels take you out this way during spring, you’re more than welcome to stay at my cabin and do some turkey calling. It is very addictive. I may not be around to be a guide, but you can go off in about any direction and find them, sometimes they strut in my yard.

November 5, 2014 8:53 am

I have met many men whose lives and health have been saved only because the women in their lives insisted that they see a doctor. Congratulations to your wife on her ass kicking skills.
My late father in-law was an artillery instructor in the Army, and an automotive engineer. Between the guns, cannons, and engines, his hearing was mostly gone in his later years. I wish he could have had something like this.
Thank you for telling your story so richly and eloquently. It warms the heart and moistens the eyes. Your example, so movingly rendered, will help a lot of people.
Hear, hear!

F. Ross
November 5, 2014 8:55 am

Thanks so much for this article.
Very happy for you.

November 5, 2014 8:57 am

I don’t usually (re: ever) comment, but I’ve been reading your blog for years. I’m sitting here, also with tears of happiness for you!

Wayne Townsend
November 5, 2014 8:57 am

Your story brought tears of joy and sadness to my eyes. Your heart-felt vulnerability before the (not always kind) world in telling this story and the triumph of caring, talented people in lifting you out of your isolation… May this triumph not only enlarge your world, but restore some of what you have lost.
Enjoy your new life and thank you for all you have given to us.

Danny Thomas
November 5, 2014 8:58 am

As a person with reasonably good hearing your discussion provided a perspective that I could not possibly have imagined had you not chosen to share.
I thank you for sharing this highly personal information. Your social stigma leading to the creation of this blog shows that much good can be created out of the most difficult of circumstance. We don’t all agree on all things but to me, this type of format helps prove that “communication” both sent and received is the key to solutions.
I’m fairly spiritual if not religious, but have always enjoyed the saying that: “MAN PLANS, BUT GOT LAUGHS!” Interesting where life takes us. Thank you for sharing a bit of yours with us.
Congratulations and wishing you the best!

November 5, 2014 8:58 am

My dad’s hearing, destroyed by a lifetime of disease, accident, gunfire, aviation noise & heavy equipment use was restored in his last years by this technology.
I hoped that this is what you were up to when you mentioned travel for a medical procedure. I hope your greater appreciation of the sounds of life will help make up for the decades you suffered without them.
Thanks again for all you do & have achieved in life despite a debilitating disability that might have ruined a lesser man.

November 5, 2014 8:58 am

What a wonderful story! It left me in tears, but tears of happiness for you. It makes me appreciate even more what you have done to preserve honest science. Thanks also for the useful information about Bluetooth. I have a wonderful set of digital hearing aids, but they are useless for telephones due to the position of their mikes. I will call my audiologist today.

November 5, 2014 8:59 am

Congratulations Anthony! We need you whole and happy out there to continue spreading the truth of science!

November 5, 2014 9:03 am


November 5, 2014 9:04 am

Hip Hip Hooray!!!!!!!!!
A joyful noise to you, Rev. This miracle couldn’t have happened to a more deserving person. God bless and pass the hymnal.

David Harrington
November 5, 2014 9:05 am

Fantastic news Anthony. I am really pleased for you, it must have been hell not to be able to hear “One Direction” clearly 🙂

November 5, 2014 9:05 am

Great news Anthony

November 5, 2014 9:06 am

I am happy for you, Anthony.

November 5, 2014 9:07 am

I am thrilled to hear this wonderful news. My heart aches for the trauma you’ve experienced, but fills with joy, at the wonderful news you’ve shared!!!

November 5, 2014 9:07 am

I just forwarded this off to my in-laws. My father-in-law has not been able to hear clearly for years, and several different pairs of over-the-counter type hearing aids. He is more frustrated than ever.
You story brought tears to my eyes and I am so happy for you!

Mark from the Midwest
November 5, 2014 9:08 am

This is great news, both personally for Dr Watts, and for the rest of us in terms of his ability to be a more effective advocate.

Bill Oliver
November 5, 2014 9:08 am

It’s interesting that you note that deafness is more socially isolating. My father was a WWII vet who was shot in the head fighting in the Pacific theater. He lost most of his vision and hearing, and what he did have declined over the ensuing years. His was a nerve deafness, and he could hear only a couple of tones. I learned to speak in those tones in a way he could understand me most of the time, but by the time he died, there were only a couple of people he could communicate with. I once asked him which was worse, being blind or being deaf. He said that being deaf was much worse for him. He noted “You know, Bill, being blind separates you from things. Being deaf separates you from people.”

Reply to  Bill Oliver
November 5, 2014 10:37 am

being blind separates you from things. Being deaf separates you from people.
Profound. Others can see that you are blind and treat you differently. They cannot see that you are deaf and that would never occur to them. Perhaps deaf people should wear big white headphones.

November 5, 2014 9:12 am

Its a beautiful thing, to read the rest of the story. Thank you for sharing.

Lance Wallace
November 5, 2014 9:12 am

I’m very happy for you, Anthony.

Neil Jordan
November 5, 2014 9:13 am

Thank you for the good news and uplifting story. I am forwarding this (actually printing and mailing) to a dear relative who has profound hearing loss.

November 5, 2014 9:14 am

Thanks for sharing Anthony – an amazing experience and I am ever so pleased for you. Brilliant!!

November 5, 2014 9:14 am

Congratulations Anthony! What a wonderful story and a great ending! Hopefully meany others will see this and find their way to a solution to their problems.

November 5, 2014 9:15 am

I must admit, my eyes got wet from reading this. Congratulations!

Shawn from High River
November 5, 2014 9:17 am

That’s awesome news Anthony!
Wishing you the best from High River ,Alberta

Paul Drahn
November 5, 2014 9:19 am

Wonderful story, Anthony.
I am going to forward a link to your story to my son, Mark. He is with the Audigy Group in Vancouver, Washington. They work with audiology businesses around the country, and I think the bulk buy from Starkey. I know they work closely and support the Starkey foundation. They may contact you for permission to use your wonderful story.

November 5, 2014 9:19 am

Congratulations Anthony and thank you for sharing this experience.

November 5, 2014 9:19 am

So happy for you. There is a lot of heaven and hell right here on earth. 😉

Arno Arrak
November 5, 2014 9:20 am

You showed yourself as a human being here, quite unlike the person who rejected my article because you did not like my English grammar. I thought for a while that this was so unlike the blogger I thought I knew that it could only come from your namesake, the Oxonian don. But I can see how your condition can put you in a sour mood about those upstarts bothering you. I personally have no hearing problems but my right eye cannot see clearly and as a result I have no stereo vision. This tripped me up in Amsterdam airport where they had a marble platform with steps coming down. To me the steps looked just like the rest of the platform until the ground disappeared from under my feet. I fell, hit my leg, and as a result acquired a hematoma in front of the leg. Double bad luck because the hematoma was caused by warfarin that I had to take daily. Stuff happens and I realize that this can sour you on everything else around you. Wish you good luck with the device. Maybe I am a grouch but I suspect that one week is not enough to know its long term performance.

Reply to  Arno Arrak
November 8, 2014 11:12 pm

A little bit of something is betgter than a whole lot of nothing.

William Astley
November 5, 2014 9:21 am

Great news!!! Best wishes Anthony.

November 5, 2014 9:22 am

Amazing news, enjoy your new life Anthony.

Michael 2
November 5, 2014 9:24 am


November 5, 2014 9:26 am

Wonderful news, and so beautifully told. So very pleased for you, and your family.

Common Sense
November 5, 2014 9:27 am

Absolutely wonderful! I’m so happy for you! I was crying for joy with you as I read! I love reading about hos technology profoundly helps people, it truly is amazing.

Brad R
November 5, 2014 9:28 am

Congratulations, Anthony. That’s a wonderful story. Thanks for sharing it!

November 5, 2014 9:31 am

Congratulations, A wonderful new chapter in your life.

Mike in Chile
November 5, 2014 9:32 am

Anthony, that is so awesome! I was an RF engineer at Starkey Labs in Eden Prairie from 2002-2005 until I moved to Texas (now live in Chile). We were just starting some of the wireless technologies for hearing aids back then. They are the best company I have ever worked for and I was very sad to leave but we were sick of the Minnesota winters (you know, because of all the warming). Bill Austin is absolutely great. He has helped so many people around the world over the years. I’m glad you liked the facilities. They were just finishing the ‘new’ part when I left. I will tell the engineers there that you had a great experience! They will be happy to hear that! Best, Mike

Larry Hamlin
November 5, 2014 9:32 am

Congratulations Anthony on succeeding in over coming a long term hearing issue!! What a struggle you have been through and how appropriate that you have finally had a great victory to celebrate!!

D. Mills
November 5, 2014 9:32 am

No more “what? up with that”

Planning Engineer
November 5, 2014 9:33 am

I seldom post here, but so happy for you! Thanks for sharing.

November 5, 2014 9:33 am

Congratulations and the very best ahead to you and your family, Anthony. My (now deceased) F-I-L suffered profound hearing loss (served as a tank crew member in WWII), and my last living Depression-era relative, an aunt, suffers severe hearing loss. This is indeed such an isolating ailment, I am elated you have come across such a wonderful solution.

November 5, 2014 9:34 am

Without your health you don’t have much. I am giving my father your links to the hearing aid people, I believe he has exactly the hearing loss you had and for exactly the same reason.

Jeff Larson
November 5, 2014 9:34 am

Thanks for sharing. I’m sure there are at least ten readers who are happy for you and appreciative for your work for every one who leaves a reply. I have relatives in Chico; if I ever get to visit them, it would be an honor to meet you in person!

November 5, 2014 9:35 am

This is wonderful, Anthony.

November 5, 2014 9:36 am

Congratulations Anthony. I am very happy for you.

November 5, 2014 9:37 am

Spending time on this blog was always a silent endeavor. While I benefited from your silence, it makes me sad to know the cost you incurred. Words fail me in communicating how grateful I am to you and how happy i am for you.
Enjoy your miracle to the fullest.

November 5, 2014 9:37 am

All you life you have had to work at listening – that skill and the profound humanity it has produced is abundantly evident in this blog. May the skill you learned in the darkness continue to guide you in the light.

mark wagner
November 5, 2014 9:37 am

Wow. Just wow. I’m so happy for you.

November 5, 2014 9:37 am

Congratulations on this huge achievement, Anthony!
Best wishes to you and your audio future.

Cold Englishman
November 5, 2014 9:38 am

Magnificent! I work daily with the blind, perhaps one day for them too.
My very best wishes to you Anthony and your family, who also have carried your burden.

November 5, 2014 9:38 am

Fantastic news Anthony, you can now enjoy life to the full.

November 5, 2014 9:39 am

Wow just wow! I’m so happy for you! And thanks for sharing your story.

Frank K.
November 5, 2014 9:39 am

I’m very happy for you Anthony! I’m a Boilermaker too (Mechanical Engineering, class of 1986)…I met my wife there, and my daughter is now a student there. Best wishes for many years of good hearing!
Go check out a good classical or jazz concert – I bet music sounds wonderful now.

Shub Niggurath
November 5, 2014 9:41 am

Great story. Brought tears to my eyes too.

Leon Brozyna
November 5, 2014 9:41 am

Terrific news … saw the headline and wanted to jump up and cheer the good news … now I can go and finish reading the details.

Shub Niggurath
November 5, 2014 9:44 am

This is not unlike the story of Christopher Burkett. As a child he was affected by poor vision and couldn’t see color and light until much later. He turned a large format photographer.

November 5, 2014 9:44 am

Congratulations on the excellent news.

November 5, 2014 9:46 am

Very happy for you, Anthony! My aunt’s first husband, who is only a few years older than me, was one of my best friends growing up, and he had a similar hearing loss path as yours for the same reasons. So I got to see that progression up close, and learned how to spell with my hands when we’d get stuck on a word.
After he and my aunt divorced, he remarried and moved away, and I haven’t talked to him in some years now –I may ask my cousin (his daughter) how he’s doing and if he’s looked into these people.
Oh, and Yay, Minnesota med-tech!

Alan the Brit
November 5, 2014 9:47 am

A truly inspiring story, Anthony. That took a lot of courage to open up about! Well done & congratulations!

November 5, 2014 9:48 am

Great News and a great story. Congratulations!

Rhoda R
November 5, 2014 9:48 am

Oh Anthony, that is so wonderful. My mother taught special needs children and she often said that hearing loss was the worst – just for the reason you’ve said: Isolation. Welcome back to the world!

Steve from Rockwood
November 5, 2014 9:49 am

Sounds like Miss Indianapolis 500 was 30 years ahead of her time.
Congratulations Anthony. It must have been most difficult as a child to lose your hearing.

Luca G
November 5, 2014 9:49 am

Congratulations and best wishes Anthony! To you and your family!
You TRULY are a great man!

Eric H
November 5, 2014 9:49 am

Awesome news, Anthony! I hope it continues to pay dividends for the rest of your life.

November 5, 2014 9:50 am

Terrific news Anthony.

November 5, 2014 9:51 am

Congrats Anthony! And thanks for sharing this good news. All the best

Dunham Cobb
November 5, 2014 9:52 am

Me caen lagrimas de alegria. Abrazotes amigo Anthony y que Dios le sigue cubriendo con bendiciones. Los mereces!!!

Oliver Sims
November 5, 2014 9:52 am

I’m so glad for you. Your story has really made my day.

November 5, 2014 9:53 am

It’s all been said above so I’ll just say that’s a wonderful story, Anthony, and that I wish you many years of good hearing.

November 5, 2014 9:53 am

This is fabulous news! A modern miracle. No, I take that back, it’s not a miracle. It’s the result of dedicated, intelligent people working with the best tools and equipment available to solve very difficult problems. It’s wonderful Anthony, welcome to the world of us noisy, yakking people. 🙂

A Lovell
Reply to  PaulH
November 5, 2014 2:06 pm

Quite agree. And I doubt this sort of result would have been possible without the industrial revolution and fossil fuels! More power to you, Anthony, in more ways than one. 🙂

November 5, 2014 9:54 am

Great news Anthony! Certainly good to, uh, hear.
You probably can’t hear the climate change any better though, can you? 🙂

Anything is possible
November 5, 2014 9:54 am

Everybody loves a story with a happy ending. Congratulations!

November 5, 2014 9:56 am

Congrats! It makes a huge difference.

November 5, 2014 9:57 am

Thanks for sharing your inspiring story. It should be re blogged widely to give others hope.

November 5, 2014 9:58 am

Congrats for you Anthony and thank you for this blog. It is my connection to right thinking people regarding climate and provides a link for me out of the social isolation of being a “sceptic”.
My thanks again!

Joseph Murphy
November 5, 2014 9:58 am

Congratulations Anthony, this is heart warming news!

Joseph Murphy
Reply to  Joseph Murphy
November 5, 2014 9:59 am

But, please don’t give up the blog! 😉

James Strom
November 5, 2014 9:59 am

Congrats, and thanks for sharing your uplifting story.

November 5, 2014 10:00 am

Anthony – this truly is one big Whoop-de-Doo!
Thanks! I cried….

November 5, 2014 10:02 am

YAY! I can imagine your elation. Enjoy!
(From someone who has never heard a video on this blog, watches TV strictly in CC mode, doesn’t use drive-throughs, very rarely uses a cell phone, and whose favorite phrase is “Say again?” Maybe I’ll give Starkey a shot at my next set of aids. I’m w-a-a-y past due on my current set and never dreamed CIC aids were possible.)
You’ve given me some hope and encouragement today. Thank you very much, Anthony.

Tom J
November 5, 2014 10:02 am

Congratulations and best wishes. You smiled on the world and the world smiled back. Enjoy. And thanks for sharing.

Data Soong
November 5, 2014 10:02 am

Very happy for you and your family. 🙂

November 5, 2014 10:03 am

Most excellent news! Especially so since things looked so bleak. But we can’t see the future, and sometimes there really is a happy ending.   ☺☺☺☺☺☺
Couldn’t have happened to a better guy.
٩(͡๏̮͡๏)۶ ღ♪*•.¸¸¸.•*¨¨*•.¸¸¸.•*•♪ღ♪¸.•*¨¨*•.¸¸¸.•*•♪ღ♪•*♪ღ♪

old engineer
November 5, 2014 10:03 am

Anthony, what a great story of overcoming adversity, with such a well-deserved conclusion! Having followed WUWT for a while, I was aware you had a hearing problem. Now all the followers of WUWT know “the rest of the story.” Like many of those who read this blog regularly, I feel that I know you, even though I have never met you. And so I rejoice with you at regaining your hearing!
Beyond the personal story, is the story of technology solving the problems that technology causes. So don’t stop blogging. I would like to think that if so much money was not spent on CAGW, that some money might be available to look into why Tetracycline is ototoxic to only some people. Perhaps a simple genetic could be developed to identify those people.

November 5, 2014 10:06 am

“…and my own self-worth suffered as a result.”
Ultimately, this is the most damaging disability of all, imvho. Like many brought up in what’s called these days a dysfunctional family, I had very little self-esteem as a teenager and then into young adulthood. We all are in point of practical fact, what we think of ourselves, and for those struggling under the weight of poor self image, it’s just about literally impossible to find anything like happiness in life. Anthony, thanks so much for sharing your story in such a candid way. I too have overcome quite a lot though I never had physical problems, and you’re an inspiration to us all..

November 5, 2014 10:06 am

That’s wonderful news, I’m so pleased for you 🙂 And thank you for sharing your personal journey, I’m sure it will help and inspire others.

Bruce Cobb
November 5, 2014 10:07 am

What a great, heartwarming story! Yes, tears of joy here as well. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer person, and kudos to your darling wife for giving you the much-needed kick in the pants to go for it.

November 5, 2014 10:08 am

Anthony, we are so happy for you – It’s truly wonderful that someone who has enabled so many to “hear” what had been missing from the global warming debate with your blog and online forum, can now hear the way so many of us take for granted – your story brought tears to my eyes – thanks for sharing!

Walt Allensworth
November 5, 2014 10:09 am

Thanks for sharing your story Anthony.
Hopefully others that are similarly afflicted will read this and find hope.

November 5, 2014 10:09 am

Great News! I now know where to go as my hearing is starting to fade.

John Snow
November 5, 2014 10:10 am

Congratulations Anthony! And thank you for sharing your story with your online community. I’m very happy for you.

November 5, 2014 10:10 am

Just in time for Thanksgiving, which should have special meaning for you and your family this year. I am so happy for you and your wife.

Henry Galt
November 5, 2014 10:12 am

I can’t seem to talk properly after reading this and the comments

Paul McLellan
November 5, 2014 10:13 am

i cried

Steve C
November 5, 2014 10:15 am

Anthony, that is bl–dy magic. I wish you nothing but the best from it.

November 5, 2014 10:15 am

Outstanding. Very happy for you.

November 5, 2014 10:17 am

Congratulations, awesome news and result! Thank you for sharing.

James Morrison
November 5, 2014 10:18 am

Anthony, first let me offer you my sincerest congratulations and well wishes. Your story is truly inspiring.
Second, I’ve enjoyed reading WUWT for years and you have always struck me as a very detail-oriented workaholic – I wish I had half your dedication and energy. If you felt impaired before I can only imagine what a dynamo you must feel like now. And if your work was adversely impacted before I can only imagine how effectively you will be able to skewer the alarmist camp going forward. It almost makes me feel sorry for them…almost.

November 5, 2014 10:18 am

Congratulations, Anthony. Coming from the land of the cochlear implant, I have seen the look of wonder when the deaf can hear. And you know what you have been missing. I hope it continues to amaze you.

November 5, 2014 10:19 am

Anthony, I’ve been following your blog since you started the surface stations project which I did some programing for. I knew you had severe hearing loss, but didn’t realize how much it affected you. Your joy and relief at gaining back the ability to hear actually brought tears to my eyes. All the best.

November 5, 2014 10:20 am

congratulations … considering what you have accomplished with your prior “disability” I look forward to seeing what you can accomplish with your new found ability to communicate verbally … if what you have done up until now was held back by your own reluctance to engage then the warmists should pray that God takes them before you do …

Doug S
November 5, 2014 10:21 am

Thank you Stacey for sharing so much of your precious family time for Anthony’s efforts. It is very much appreciated! Best wishes to you and the Watts family.

Reply to  Doug S
November 5, 2014 10:24 am

There is nothing as important to a man as a supportive wife.

November 5, 2014 10:21 am

Fantastic to hear of your success. As someone who is also experiencing a continually deteriorating hearing loss (inherited from my mother), I can easily associate with many of your situations, ones I’ve found myself in many times. Even with two hearing aids and continued improvement, crowd situations are definitely the toughest. As a funny aside, I thought it was a personality trait that I didn’t enjoy being in crowds until I found out the real reason.
Likewise, being able to hear costs me thousands of dollars every few years but it’s something I’ve (partially) come to accept.
All the best,

November 5, 2014 10:23 am

Taken for granted by many….good for you and your family!
I am slowly losing my hearing, due to working in a sawmill (when i was younger), next to 10 blades cutting boards to various lengths, and the high pitch sounds they emitted. I now have 24/7 constant ringing in my ears and it is so loud at night when I lay down that I have a hard time hearing my wife beside me.
So I am truly happy for you.

Paul Demmert
November 5, 2014 10:24 am

Your story was a joy to read. My heartfelt congratulations to you and your success against adversity. Thanks, Anthony, for telling us your very personal story. It made my day.

John Coleman
November 5, 2014 10:24 am

We all rejoice at this huge success for science to restore your hearing and your life, Anthony. I note that it was scientists not government that did this for you. The amazing thing to me, my friend, is that we were together two weeks before this big event and you handled yourself so well that I was hardly aware of your hearing loss. You are quite an amazing person.

November 5, 2014 10:26 am

Anthony, Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. This is a wonderful, hopeful story you tell here. I’ve seen people retreat into themselves because of hearing loss, and give up almost entirely on any social life. Truly, it is as terrible as you say. If even one person confronting severe hearing loss is helped by this article, you’ll have done a good day’s work.

Michael Larkin
November 5, 2014 10:27 am

Wonderful, Anthony: simply wonderful. I am so happy for you. I just wondered how you were getting on with music. Does it sound any better for you now? I do hope so! 🙂

November 5, 2014 10:27 am

Happy, Happy!!!! Anthony, what goes around comes around. It’s payback for the wonderful service you’ve provided to the community.

Will Nelson
November 5, 2014 10:28 am

I am overjoyed for you. Finally… released from solitary.

A C Osborn
November 5, 2014 10:28 am

Congratulations Anthony.
Are your new “earphones” the same as Cochlear Implants?

Ian W
Reply to  A C Osborn
November 5, 2014 10:51 am

No – these are well made more powerful in the ear hearing aids with digital signal processors that change waveforms to make them more understandable. I was in very much the same position as Anthony with profound if not total hearing loss, and there was no way even behind the ear aids at huge volume were helping so like Seza above I have a cochlear implant and get another for the other side soon. They are a set of electrodes that are run into the cochlear from a circuit board under the scalp. That circuit board is linked by near field comms to a digital signal processor that hangs on your ear. The processor changes sounds into impulses that are then sent to the circuit board that then feeds them to the 20+ electrodes in your cochlear that make direct contact with your auditory nerve. You then have to learn how to hear with those. In my right ear I now have the hearing acuity of a 2 year old and discrimination of nearly 90%. Wonderful devices.

November 5, 2014 10:28 am

Awesome! Good for you Anthony. Thank you for sharing some of your personal life, painful as it was. You are an inspiration to others with hearing loss and to everyone else quite frankly. Your story reads like a good book with a happy ending. Should be made into a movie. Who would play the lead?
May God continue to bless you and your family.

Doctor Gee
November 5, 2014 10:30 am

So happy to hear your story. I heartfeltly echo the warm wishes already posted.

November 5, 2014 10:30 am

Dear Anthony
This is great news and although you have been suffering from hearing difficulties most of your life this has not stopped you being a great listener.
Ps I am not Anthony’s wife 🙂

Steve Oak
November 5, 2014 10:31 am

Congratulations Anthony and thank you so much for sharing your story with us.
I knew that you had difficulties with hearing but I had no idea how severely you suffered.
I am very, very happy for you.
Steve Oak
Consistent reader, occasional commenter, sporadic contributor, eternally grateful.

November 5, 2014 10:33 am

I read a very good crime novel about twenty years ago called A Maiden’s Grave by Jeffrey Deaver, about a busload of deaf students hijacked by killers. It gave a great insight into the world of the deaf, which is completely differnt from any other physical impairment. There are reasons for that.
Deaf people have a hierarchy, with those who were born deaf at the top. They are the best signers and lip readers. Those who become deaf later have an ‘accent’ when signing, so everyone knows where everyone else stands. A good book; I can recommend it for folks who like crime fiction.

November 5, 2014 10:34 am

Congradulations, Anthony, on your escape from the affliction that hampered you.
You have made a big difference in this world.
Here’s wishing all the best for you.

slow to follow
November 5, 2014 10:35 am

Congratulations Anthony! Best wishes for continued success with the new devices.

Bloke down the pub
November 5, 2014 10:35 am

Having heard your booming voice in person, it’ll be a shame to lose it. Still, all I can do is whisper congratulations.

Richard T
November 5, 2014 10:35 am

Wonderful story! Thank you for sharing it. I will forward it to my audiologist daughter. She en

John from Tassie
November 5, 2014 10:35 am

Best wishes for a future with full sterio sound.
Congratulations Anthony.

Richard T
November 5, 2014 10:37 am

Hit the wrong key. My daughter enjoys helping people and seeing the fruits of her training pay off for others.