Patient Care Cochlear Implants Research Ear, Hearing and Vestibular

Cochlear implants should be recommended for more adults with hearing loss

Eight faculty members who wrote four papers in JAMA Otolaryngology
Faculty from Washington University's Dept. of Otolaryngology authored four papers about the use of cochlear implants by adults in the most recent JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

Cochlear implants should be made available to more adults with hearing loss, according to four recent studies authored by otolaryngologists at Washington University School of Medicine.

All four papers from the Department of Otolaryngology at Washington University appear in the latest JAMA Otolaryngology­–Head & Neck Surgery. It’s highly unusual to have four studies from the same institution in the same publication.

“We hope that this research will result in more adults with hearing loss gaining access to cochlear implants,” said Craig Buchman, MD, Lindburg Professor and head of the Department of Otolaryngology. 

Chair Craig Buchman MD
Craig Buchman, MD

“Fewer than 10% of adults who could benefit from them actually receive one of these devices,” according to Buchman. “These devices can be extremely effective for adults who have lost hearing later in life. Adults who have difficulty talking on the phone, for example, are probably candidates for a cochlear implant.”

Buchman discussed the findings in today’s JAMA Otolaryngology Author Interviews podcast. Listen now »

The four papers from the Department of Otolaryngology are:

  1. Unilateral Cochlear Implants for Bilateral Severe, Profound, or Moderate Sloping to Profound Sensorineural Hearing Loss–A Systematic Review and Consensus Statements.

    This systematic review and consensus study uses a modified Delphi consensus process. Informed by a systematic review of the literature and led by Dr. Buchman, the panel of 30 international experts developed 20 evidence-based consensus statements regarding the use of unilateral cochlear implants in adults with severe, profound or moderate sloping to profound bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. Read the review »
  2. Assessment of Speech Understanding After Cochlear Implantation in Adult Hearing Aid Users: A Nonrandomized Clinical Trial.

    This nonrandomized controlled trial investigates the safety and effectiveness of a single-ear cochlear implant in a group of optimized adult hearing aid users with and without mild cognitive impairment across a variety of outcome domains. 
    Read the original investigation »
  3. Hearing and Quality-of-Life Outcomes After Cochlear Implantation in Adult Hearing Aid Users 65 Years or Older: A Secondary Analysis of a Nonrandomized Clinical Trial.

    This secondary analysis of a nonrandomized clinical trial explores the audiometric and holistic effects of cochlear implantation in a group of adults 65 years or older compared with an optimized bilateral hearing aid condition.
    Read the original investigation »
  1. Assessment of Cochlear Implants for Adult Medicare Beneficiaries Aged 65 or Older Who Meet Expanded Indications of Open-Set Sentence Recognition: A Multicenter Nonrandomized Clinical Trial.

    This multicenter nonrandomized clinical trial examines the effectiveness of cochlear implants as measured by improvement on the AzBio Sentence Test for newly implanted Medicare beneficiaries who meet the expanded indications of an AzBio Sentence Test score of 41% to 60% in their best-aided condition. These findings support expanding access to cochlear implants for Medicare and Medicaid Services beneficiaries. 
    Read the original investigation »