Publicaciones científicas

The Listening Network and Cochlear Implant Benefits in Hearing-Impaired Adults

25-feb-2021 | Revista: Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience

Chris J James  1 , Petra L Graham  2 , Frank A Betances Reinoso  3 , Silvia N Breuning  4 , Marcin Durko  5 , Alicia Huarte Irujo  6 , Juan Royo López  7 , Lida Müller  8 , Adam Perenyi  9 , Rafael Jaramillo Saffon  10 , Sandra Salinas Garcia  11 , Mark Schüssler  12 , Margarita J Schwarz Langer  13 , Piotr H Skarzynski  14 , Dianne J Mecklenburg  15


Older adults with mild or no hearing loss make more errors and expend more effort listening to speech. Cochlear implants (CI) restore hearing to deaf patients but with limited fidelity.

We hypothesized that patient-reported hearing and health-related quality of life in CI patients may similarly vary according to age. Speech Spatial Qualities (SSQ) of hearing scale and Health Utilities Index Mark III (HUI) questionnaires were administered to 543 unilaterally implanted adults across Europe, South Africa, and South America.

Data were acquired before surgery and at 1, 2, and 3 years post-surgery. Data were analyzed using linear mixed models with visit, age group (18-34, 35-44, 45-54, 55-64, and 65+), and side of implant as main factors and adjusted for other covariates. Tinnitus and dizziness prevalence did not vary with age, but older groups had more preoperative hearing.

Preoperatively and postoperatively, SSQ scores were significantly higher (Δ0.75-0.82) for those aged <45 compared with those 55+. However, gains in SSQ scores were equivalent across age groups, although postoperative SSQ scores were higher in right-ear implanted subjects.

All age groups benefited equally in terms of HUI gain (0.18), with no decrease in scores with age. Overall, younger adults appeared to cope better with a degraded hearing before and after CI, leading to better subjective hearing performance.

CITA DEL ARTÍCULO  Front Aging Neurosci. 2021 Feb 25;13:589296.  doi: 10.3389/fnagi.2021.589296. eCollection 2021.