Quality of Life for Children With Cochlear Implants: Perceived Benefits and Problems and the Perception of Single Words and Emotional Sounds

Schorr, Efrat A.; Roth, Froma P.; Fox, Nathan A.
February 2009
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Feb2009, Vol. 52 Issue 1, p141
Academic Journal
Purpose: This study examined children's self-reported quality of life with a cochlear implant as related to children's actual perceptions of speech and the emotional information conveyed by sound. Effects of age at amplification with hearing aids and fitting of cochlear implants on perceived quality of life were also investigated. Method: A self-reported quality of life questionnaire and assessments of speech perception (single words) and emotion identification were administered to a sample of 37 children with cochlear implants who were congenitally deaf, who were 5-14 years of age, and who all used spoken language. Results: The children reported significant improvement in quality of life because of their cochlear implants, and they also reported low levels of concern about typical problems associated with wearing an implant. The children's perceived quality of life did not significantly predict speech perception performance at the single word level. In contrast, increased quality of life predicted better performance on the emotion identification task. Age at first use of amplification predicted perceived quality of life. Conclusions: The findings regarding age reinforce the importance of early detection and intervention for children's positive quality of life with cochlear implants later in childhood.


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