This clinical practice guideline is specific to the evaluation for and management of cochlear implants and addresses the technical aspects of the cochlear implant candidacy evaluation, objective measurements, device programming, and follow-up care. This guideline is not intended to serve as a standard to dictate precisely how cochlear implants should be programmed.

The guideline is meant to provide the evidence base from which the clinician can make individualized decisions for each patient. In addition, the guideline can help inform physicians, reimbursement agencies, government agencies, the hearing-health-care industry, patients, families, and caregivers about what research evidence demonstrates as the current best practices related to cochlear implant care.

Key Points

The audiologist’s role in the clinical management of recipients of cochlear implants spans from pre-implant assessment and determination of candidacy to ongoing post-implant care.

The audiologist conducts the pre-implant audiological test battery for determining cochlear implant candidacy, which includes, but is not limited to, conducting assessments of auditory sensitivity, aided speech detection/reception, and spoken-word recognition and serves on the team determining candidacy. 

The audiologist also provides post-implant care critical to positive outcomes with a cochlear implant. Timely and consistent follow-up care and device programming are factors contributing to success with the cochlear implant that are within the scope of audiologists. These factors ensure appropriate counseling, care of the device, and provide the opportunity for optimized programming leading to increased access to the various acoustic cues needed for adequate speech perception and speech and language development. 

Get Involved

Whether serving on a clinical document development panel or participating as peer reviewers, volunteers have regular chances to deepen their engagement with the Academy and make important contributions benefiting the field of audiology. If you are interested in clinical document development, please volunteer to express interest and submit a CV to the Academy’s guidelines staff by email.

To view the list of guidelines and strategic documents in development and to learn more about the Academy’s clinical document development process, visit the Academy’s Practice Resources website. Information from interested members is accepted on an ongoing basis, and members will be contacted as clinical document volunteer openings occur.

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