Combining Cochlear Implants and Normal Hearing
Since 2008 (see Van De Hetning, Vermeire and Diebl), multiple reports and studies have addressed the benefit of cochlear implants (CIs) in the worse (unilateral deafness or “unaidable”) ear, given a normal (or nearly normal, or aidable) contralateral ear (see Arndt, Aschendorff, Laszig et al 2011, Baguley 2010, Buechner, Brendel, Lesinki-schiedat et al 2010, VanZon, Peters, Stegeman et al, 2015). Taken together, these multiple reports demonstrate CIs as a viable and suitable aural rehabilitation option for adults with unilateral profound deafness.
Tavora-Vieira (2015) performed a prospective study on 28 patients undergoing cochlear implantation for unilateral deafness. The authors report that for their patients with unilateral deafness, CIs provided improved speech perception in noise and improved subjective perception of hearing (as measured by the SSQ and the APHAB) and CIs often decrease perceived tinnitus. With specific regard to the SSQ, unilateral CIs provided improvement across all three subscales (speech, spatial hearing and qualities of hearing). The authors report age at time of implantation and duration of deafness did not affect outcome.
For More Information, References, and Recommendations
Arndt S, Aschendorff. Laszig R, Beck R, Schild C, Kroeger S, Ihorst G, Wesarg T. (2011) Comparison of Pseudobinaural Hearing to Real Binaural Hearing Rehabilitation After Cochlear Implantation in Patients With Unilateral Deafness and Tinnitus. Otology & Neurotology 32(1):39-47
Baguley DM. (2010) Cochlear Implants in Single-Sided Deafness and Tinnitus. Seminars in Hearing 31(4):410-413.
Buechner A, Brendel M, Lesinki-schiedat A, Wenzel G, Frohne-Buechner C, Jaeger B, Lenarz, T. (2010) Cochlear Implantation in Unilateral Deaf Subjects Associated With Ipsilateral Tinnitus. Otology & Neurotology 31(9):1381-1385
Tavora-Vieira D, Marino R, Acharya A, Rajan GP. (2015): The Impact of Cochlear Implantation on Speech Understanding, Subjective Hearing Performance, and Tinnitus Perception in Patients with Unilateral Severe to Profound Hearing Loss. Otology & Neurotology 36:430-436.
Van Zon A, Peters JPM, Stegeman I, Smit AL, Grolman W. (2015) Cochlear Implantation for Patients with Single-Sided Deafness or Asymmetrical Hearing Loss--A Systematic Review of the Evidence. Otology & Neurotology 36:209-219.
Van De Heyning P, Vermeire K, Diebl M. (2008) Incapacitating Unilateral Tinnitus in Single Sided Deafness Treated by Cochlear Implantation. Ann Otol Rhinol 117:645-652.