About us

The first cochlear implant program in Africa was established at Tygerberg Academic Hospital of Stellenbosch University. Under the leadership of Professor Derrick Wagenfeld (ENT surgeon) and Lida Müller (Audiologist), the first multichannel cochlear implant was performed at Tygerberg Hospital on an adult on 4 November 1986. In 1988 the first child in South Africa received a cochlear implant.

Since then, we have carried out over 1,000 cochlear implant operations and have more than 800 implant recipients. The youngest children were implanted at the age of 4 months and the oldest adult recipient in our programme is over 90 years of age.


Our team offers a seamless service to all individuals and their families affected by hearing loss, including infants, children, adolescents and adults who are considering, or who have received cochlear implants.

Cochlear implantation requires a unique combination of technology, skill and long-term support provided by a specialised multi-disciplinary team. TH-US-CIU is highly experienced and in a unique position to provide this lifelong support to all our patients and their families, both present and future.


We* regularly review the technology and selection criteria used internationally to ensure the latest developments are available to our candidates. Our program offers the Nucleus® implant system manufactured by the Cochlear™ Corporation (www.cochlear.com) and the MedEl cochlear implant system (www.medel.com). We  receive excellent clinical and technical support from Southern ENT (www.southernear.com), who are the distributors for the Nucleus device in South Africa, and from MEDEL South Africa.


* Our team is endorsed by the South African Cochlear Implant Group (SACIG) ( www.sacig.org.za) and operates according to the national guidelines for South Africa: Quality Standards for Cochlear Implantation (https://www.sacig.org.za/about-us/mission/).



Implant Operations



Implant Recipients