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HNO. 2006 Jul;54(7):565-72.

[Paediatric cochlear implantation in the first year of life: preliminary results].

[Article in German]

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Klinik für Hals-, Nasen-, Ohrenheilkunde, Medizinische Hochschule Hannover.



The success of cochlear implants in children was followed by a stepwise reduction in age at time of surgery. As a result of newborn hearing-screening (NHS) and the reliable audiologic diagnostic procedure, the question is raised as to whether an implantation before the age of 1 year is effective and safe in terms of surgery and rehabilitation.


This retrospective study included 27 children implanted before the age of 1 year (Gr. 1) and 89 children implanted between the age of 1 and 2 years (Gr. 2). Patient related data were analysed for individual history, surgery, rehabilitation and speech understanding.


The incidence of complications was not increased in Gr. 1. The fitting of a speech processor was effective and uneventful in all children. The development of hearing and speech understanding showed better results after 2 years in Gr. 1. This development is more obvious for absolute age and not to rehabilitation time.


In order to achieve an optimal timing for the development of speech understanding, cochlear implantation should be performed before the age of 2 years. This study revealed no additional risks for children in Gr. 1, but the development of speech understanding was better. As a consequence, cochlear implantation should be considered for very young children with an identified bilateral profound hearing loss.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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