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S38 Quality of life
Sound quality perception and quality of life in adults with profound bilateral deafness and unilateral
cochlear implantation
Calvino M. , Lassaletta L. , Sánchez-Cuadrado I. , Pérez-Mora R. , Gavilán J.
La Paz University Hospital, Department of Otolaryngology, Madrid, Spain, 2IdiPAZ Research Institute, Madrid, Spain
This postoperative data collection study evaluated postlingually deafened cochlear implant (CI) users' selfreported sound quality and quality of life (QoL) and determined their level of music perception and their ease of
phone, TV, and radio use.
78 adults with postlingual bilateral deafness and unilateral cochlear implantation, with a minimum of 6 months CI
experience participated in the study. Sound quality was self-evaluated using the Hearing Implant Sound Quality
Index (HISQUI). HISQUI scores were further examined in 3 subsets: music perception, phone use, and TV and
radio use. QoL was evaluated using the Glasgow Benefit Inventory (GBI). GBI scores were further examined in 3
subsets: general, social, and physical benefit. Audiometric tests comprised of pure tone averages (500-4000 Hz),
monosyllables in silence, disyllables and sentences in silence and in noise. Subject gender and age at
implantation were also recorded. Possible correlations between the scores on any of the test points, audiometric
data, and demographic data were examined.
Mean total HISQUI score indicated that subjects derived a “moderate” sound quality perception from their CI,
although 46.1% reported “good” or “very good” while 27.2% reported “bad” or “very bad”. Almost half the
subjects reported they could accomplish the music perception tasks at least half of the time. TV and radio were
much easier to “effortlessly” understand in quiet than in background noise. Background noise also made phone
use difficult. Most subjects could differentiate male from female voices on the telephone. Familiar speakers were
easier to “effortlessly” understand than unfamiliar. On the GBI, 89% of subjects reported that they derived benefit
from having a CI. HISQUI score significantly correlated to all subcategories of the GBI. Age at implantation
inversely correlated with the total HISQUI score, and more specifically, with TV and radio understanding.
Regarding audiometric results, the most remarkable of the significant correlations was between the % of
sentences in noise correctly repeated and all sound perception scores. Women had a better score in music
perception and in the phone use than did men.
Cochlear implantation had a significant beneficial impact on subjects' QoL, although their mean sound quality
perception was only “moderate”. Understanding TV and radio and using the phone was easier in quiet than in
noise. Music perception remains a challenge. HISQUI and GBI are useful and important instruments in that they
can provide information about the everyday effects of treatment modalities, rehabilitation strategies, and
technical developments.
Participants will learn how adults may improve their QoL and sound quality perception after CI use. They will
learn that music perception, TV and radio understanding, and the use of phone are some tasks that can be
performed with some limitations. The importance of these results is that they could be useful tools for future
research in CI field.