Maximizing cochlear implant patients' performance with advanced speech training procedures

Hear Res. 2008 Aug;242(1-2):198-208. doi: 10.1016/j.heares.2007.11.010. Epub 2007 Dec 8.


Advances in implant technology and speech processing have provided great benefit to many cochlear implant patients. However, some patients receive little benefit from the latest technology, even after many years' experience with the device. Moreover, even the best cochlear implant performers have great difficulty understanding speech in background noise, and music perception and appreciation remain major challenges. Recent studies have shown that targeted auditory training can significantly improve cochlear implant patients' speech recognition performance. Such benefits are not only observed in poorly performing patients, but also in good performers under difficult listening conditions (e.g., speech noise, telephone speech, music, etc.). Targeted auditory training has also been shown to enhance performance gains provided by new implant devices and/or speech processing strategies. These studies suggest that cochlear implantation alone may not fully meet the needs of many patients, and that additional auditory rehabilitation may be needed to maximize the benefits of the implant device. Continuing research will aid in the development of efficient and effective training protocols and materials, thereby minimizing the costs (in terms of time, effort and resources) associated with auditory rehabilitation while maximizing the benefits of cochlear implantation for all recipients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Cochlear Implants*
  • Correction of Hearing Impairment / trends*
  • Humans
  • Patient Education as Topic / trends*
  • Speech Perception*