Long-term results of cochlear implantation in children with congenital single-sided deafness

Ann-Kathrin Rauch, Susan Arndt, Antje Aschendorff, Rainer Beck, Iva Speck, Manuel Christoph Ketterer, Till Fabian Jakob, Frederike Hassepass
European Archives of Oto-rhino-laryngology 2020 October 20

PURPOSE: The purpose of this retrospective study was to investigate the outcome and critical age of cochlear implantation in congenital single-sided deafness (SSD).

METHODS: 11 children with congenital SSD were implanted with a cochlear implant (CI). Auditory performance was measured through the results of speech discrimination, subjective assessment by the Categories of auditory performance (CAP) score, the Speech, Spatial and Qualities scale questionnaire (SSQ) and the German version of the IOI-HA [Internationales Inventar zur Evaluation von Hörgeräten (IIEH, version for CI)].

RESULTS: Long-term follow-up [median: 3 years and 5 months (3;5 years)] revealed that nine children use their CI (> 8 h/day) and two became nonusers. In children aged below 3;2 years at surgery, there was a substantial long-term increase in speech discrimination and subjective benefit. Children over 4;4 years of age at CI surgery improved partially in audiological/subjective measurements. Among children above 5 years, the SSQ score did not improve despite further slight improvement in speech discrimination long-term.

CONCLUSION: Our data suggest a critical age for CI surgery below 3 years in children with congenital SSD for successful hearing rehabilitation. It is mandatory to identify children with SSD as early as bilaterally deaf children.

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