Children's Health

published : 2023-08-26

North Carolina Baby Hears Father’s Voice, Responds with Tears

Born with hearing deformity, Nellie Rosales experiences her father’s voice for the first time

A close-up shot of an audiologist holding a hearing aid device, illustrating the intricate details of the technology that would dramatically change Nellie Rosales' life. Taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV.

In a moment that could be described as both heartwarming and surprising, 11-month-old Nellie Rosales heard her father's voice for the first time and responded with a flood of tears. Nellie, from Fayetteville, North Carolina, was born with atresia, an ear deformity that results in an undeveloped ear canal and the absence of middle ear structures, rendering her deaf in one ear.

Accompanying this was a condition known as microtia, a birth defect that affects the external appearance of the ear, both of which were identified by doctors at the Texas Children’s Hospital. As news of this reached audiences globally, many were captivated by the emotional journey of Nellie and her family.

With the help of a specially fitted hearing solution, Nellie was presented with the opportunity to hear her father, Jacob Rosales, speak for the first time. Despite the initial shock, which led to an outburst of emotion on Nellie’s part, Jacob describes the experience as life-changing, stating that seeing his child hear his voice was a moment that captured his breath.

A candid image of a man, representing Jacob Rosales, sitting peacefully in his home in Fayetteville, North Carolina, speaking softly to an unseen listener, creating a sense of anticipation for Nellie's first hearing experience. Shot on a Nikon D850.

The device works by transmitting sound through vibrations from Nellie’s skull, therefore bypassing her impaired ear canal. This profound change has altered Nellie’s world, making her now aware of sounds she was previously unaware of, such as the dogs outside her home.

Jacob and his wife, Sharon Hernandez, who are both military service members, have commented on the vast improvement in their child's hearing, indicating the difference as being 'night and day'. They have expressed how she's now able to hear sounds from other rooms and understand their words, which confirms the efficacy of her new hearing device.

Mentioning the cost of the device, Jacob revealed it amounted to $6,000, a sum that the family was able to afford thanks to their health insurance. Without the coverage, they would have been faced with the daunting necessity of securing a large loan.

A heartwarming photo of a baby girl, comparable to Nellie, joyfully playing with a small object, signalling the newfound excitement Nellie feels every time her hearing device is put on. Captured using a Sony Alpha 7R III.

Currently, little Nellie gets excited every time her hearing device is put on, demonstrating a shift in her initial response to it. The transformative journey of the Rosales family serves as a testament to the advancements in medical science and the possibilities it brings.