Cochlear Implants and Cognitive Function?
Mosnier et al (2015) and colleagues evaluated the relationship between cognitive function and hearing restoration through cochlear implants (CIs) in elderly patients. The study was performed between 2006 and 2009 and included 94 patients between 65 and 85 years of age. Each participant was evaluated pre-op, and 6 and 12 months post-op. Six tests were used to assess cognitive function including the Mini Mental State Exam (MMSE), the 5-Word Test, the Clock-Drawing Test, Verbal Fluency Test, the D2 Test of Attention and Trail Making Tests (parts A and B). Additional tests included quality of life tests and the Geriatric Depression Scale.
As expected, CI implantation facilitated improved speech perception in quiet and noise, as well as improved quality of life and improved depression scores. However, at one year post-op, 30 of 37 patients (in one of the subgroups) demonstrated improved global cognitive function. In the remaining 7 of 37 patients, their cognitive performance remained stable. The authors note that mean scores improved across all cognitive domains were observed at 6 months post-op. The authors concluded that hearing rehabilitation through cochlear implantation in this population “results in improvements in speech perception and cognitive abilities and positively influences their social activity and quality of life.”
For More Information, References, and Recommendations
Mosnier I, Bebear J, Marx M, et al. Improvement of Cognitive Function After Cochlear Implantation in Elderly Patients. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. Published online March 12, 2015.