Sequential bilateral cochlear implantation in the adolescent population

David R. Friedmann, Janet Green, Yixin Fang, Kelsey Ensor, J. Thomas Roland, Susan B. Waltzman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Objectives To examine the variables affecting outcomes for sequential bilateral cochlear implantation patients in the adolescent population. Study Design Retrospective chart review at tertiary care center. Methods Main outcome measures were open set speech recognition tests at the word (Consonant-Nucleus-Consonant/Phonetically Balanced Kindergarten List Test [CNC/PBK]) and sentence levels in noise (Hearing in Noise Test-Noise [HINT-N]) in different test conditions with respect to the age at first and sequential implantation, as well as the interval between implants. Results Despite a mean age at sequential implantation of 13.5 years, sequential bilateral implanted adolescents revealed significant improvement in the sequential cochlear implant (CI2) ear. The mean time interval between implants was 8.2 years. A wide range of performance was noted, and age at implantation and interval between first cochlear implant (CI1) and CI2 did not predict outcome. Mean CNC/PBK score with CI1 alone was 83.0%, with the CI2 alone was 56.5%, and with bilateral implants was 86.8%. Sentence scores (HINT-N) were 89.5% for CI1, 74.2% for CI2, and 94.4% for bilateral CI condition. The clinical relevance of these enhanced perception abilities requires attention to individual device use, performance with the first implant, and subjective benefits reported by patients. Conclusions Bilateral sequential cochlear implantation leads to improved speech perception in the adolescent population and should be considered in this population, even after a long period of deafness and despite a prolonged interval between implants. Numerous factors affect the ability to predict performance, but age at implantation and interimplant interval were not correlated with performance measures. Extensive preoperative counseling and individualized evaluation are critical to ensure that patients and families understand the range of possible outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1952-1958
Number of pages7
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Otorhinolaryngology


  • Adolescent, pediatric cochlear implants
  • bilateral
  • sequential


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