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J Speech Hear Res. 1992 Apr;35(2):401-17.

Cochlear implants in children, adolescents, and prelinguistically deafened adults: speech perception.

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Department of Otolaryngology, University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.


A group of 10 children, adolescents, and prelinguistically deafened adults were implanted with the 22-electrode cochlear implant (Cochlear Pty Ltd) at the University of Melbourne Cochlear Implant Clinic and have used the prosthesis for periods from 12 to 65 months. Postoperative performance on the majority of closed-set speech perception tests was significantly greater than chance, and significantly better than preoperative performance for all of the patients. Five of the children have achieved substantial scores on open-set speech tests using hearing without lipreading. Phoneme scores in monosyllabic words ranged from 30% to 72%; word scores in sentences ranged from 26% to 74%. Four of these 5 children were implanted during preadolescence (aged 5:5 to 10:2 years) and the fifth, who had a progressive loss, was implanted during adolescence (aged 14:8 years). The duration of profound deafness before implantation varied from 2 to 8 years. Improvements were also noted over postoperative data collection times for the younger children. The remaining 5 patients who did not demonstrate open-set recognition were implanted after a longer duration of profound deafness (aged 13:11 to 20:1 years). The results are discussed with reference to variables that may affect implant performance, such as age at onset of loss, duration of profound loss, age at implantation, and duration of implantation. They are compared with results for similar groups of children using hearing aids and cochlear implants.

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