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Younger Cochlear Implant Recipients Have Stronger Language Skills than Non-Implant Hearing Aid Recipients

Newswise Children with profound hearing loss who receive cochlear implants before the age of 6 show significant gains in language acquisition, and compare favorably with other children who can hear, according to a new study.

The research, first presented at the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundations Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO in Washington, DC, indicates that children that receive cochlear implants scored higher on language assessments test, compared to children fitted with non-implanted hearing aids.

According to the study, which profiled 36 children whose average age at implantation was 3 years old, children with profound hearing loss prior to their development of language benefited from cochlear implants. Over 50 percent of those studied had language scores similar to their hearing peer within two years of cochlear implantation.

Cochlear implant technology, which allows for direct stimulation of the auditory nerve, provides an improved auditory experience for children with profound hearing loss. Over 20,000 cochlear implants have been performed in children worldwide over the past two decades.

Title: Language Outcomes in Children after Cochlear Implantation
Authors: Cristina Baldassari, MD, Kelley Melissa Dodson, MD, Aristides Sismanis, MD
Date: Monday, September 17, 2007, 10:06 AM 10:14 AM

About the AAO-HNS

The American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery (www.entnet.org), one of the oldest medical associations in the nation, represents more than 12,000 physicians and allied health professionals who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the ears, nose, throat, and related structures of the head and neck. The Academy serves its members by facilitating the advancement of the science and art of medicine related to otolaryngology and by representing the specialty in governmental and socioeconomic issues. The organizations mission: Working for the Best Ear, Nose, and Throat Care.

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