Perspectives on cochlear implants

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Title: Perspectives on cochlear implants
Author: Sarchet, Thomastine
Abstract: Since their inception, the costs and benefits of cochlear implants (CIs) have been an area of considerable interest. Much of the discussion and published research, however, have focused on outcomes for children with implants; very little on adolescent and adult outcomes or the reasons why individuals choose to get implants (or not). Meanwhile, research on implant users typically only has included the "successful" users and the benefits of implantation, primarily with regard to speech and audition. Very little work has been published on mechanical failures of these devices or personal decisions to discontinue implant use. In general, the literature also has failed to address the socioemotional effects of implantation. A few studies have addressed these issues among young children by asking their parents, but there is a need to examine the effects of implantation on adults and older children, who may be old enough to take part in the decision for implantation. This study involved interviews of college students who currently have cochlear implants or who had them previously but discontinued their use. Questions focused on satisfaction with their cochlear implants and reasons why some individuals choose to utilize them or not. The study has begun a longer-term consideration of socio-emotional aspects of cochlear implant use and satisfies recent calls from investigators to better understand implant non-users, a population typically omitted from research reports.
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Date: 2008-05

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