Bone Anchored Hearing Aid Device, BAHA

A bone anchored hearing device (BAHA) is a surgically implanted piece of equipment designed to restore hearing for people who otherwise have a hearing loss. A BAHA is most likely to benefit someone for whom hearing aides are not effective but who have functioning in at least one inner ear. Sound waves are transmitted through the BAHA and into the bone in which it is implanted; the bone then sends the vibration directly to the inner ear. Not to be confused with a cochlear implant, which sends electrical signals, a BAHA sends vibrations to a working cochlea.

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Provider List

2900 12th Avenue North #350 W
Billings, MT 59101
(406) 238-6161

What is a Cochlea

The cochlea is a spiral mechanism in the inner ear that sends nerve impulses to your brain as it receives sound vibrations. In order to benefit from a BAHA, patients must have at least one functioning cochlea. If a patient does not have a functioning cochlea, they may instead benefit from a cochlear implant.

When Procedure is Used

Hearing loss can be caused by varying problems within the structure of the ear. In some instances, the amplification of sounds provided by hearing aides is enough to restore a patient’s hearing. In other instances, the middle ear does not function properly. These patients may benefit from a bone anchored hearing aid device that conducts sound vibrations from the outside world through the bone and directly into the inner ear. A BAHA is especially effective for patients who have at least one ear that functions normally.

During Surgery

During the procedure, you may have a general anesthesia that puts you to sleep or you may be fine with just a local anesthesia. This is something you will have an opportunity to discuss with your doctor prior to surgery. The surgeon will then implant a titanium screw and abutment into your skull. Your skin will then be sewn around the abutment, and it will extend outside of your body. While the procedure may sound unpleasant, it only takes about an hour, and you will likely be able to return to normal activities the next day. Once the titanium screw and abutment have become fully integrated into the bone, a removable microphone and sound processor will be attached to the abutment in order to convey sound vibrations to your skull.


The risk of complications is very low. However, potential risks might include

  • allergic reactions to medications
  • bleeding
  • infection
  • failure of ossification (implant does not fuse with the skull bone)


  • improved ability to hear sounds naturally
  • minimally invasive procedure that does not have long-term side effects and that can be reversed if necessary

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