Background: Considering that hearing loss has a significant impact on social functioning, everyday activity and a person's emotional state, one of the most important goals of hearing rehabilitation with bone conduction devices is improvement in a patient's quality of life.
Objectives: To measure self-assessed quality of life in patients implanted with the Bonebridge, a bone conduction device.
Method: Prospective, observational, longitudinal study with one treatment group. Twenty-one patients with mixed or conductive hearing loss were included, and each individual served as its own control. The Abbreviated Profile of Hearing Aid Benefit (APHAB) was used to measure patient-reported quality of life before intervention and at 3 and 6 months after activation of the device. At the same time frames, pure-tone audiometry and speech understanding in quiet and in noise were tested.
Results: Hearing-specific quality of life increased significantly after intervention and remained stable up to 6 months. Both word recognition in quiet and speech reception threshold in noise were significantly better after 6 months compared to before surgery. Outcomes of aided speech understanding were independent of initial bone conduction thresholds and equally high (word recognition score >75%) across the device's indication range.
Conclusions: The Bonebridge provides not only significant audiological benefit in both speech understanding in quiet and in noise, but also increases self-perceived quality of life in patients suffering from mixed and conductive hearing loss. Together with a very low rate and minor nature of adverse events, it is the state-of-the-art solution for hearing rehabilitation in patients with mixed or conductive hearing loss up to a bone conduction threshold of 45 dB HL.
Keywords: Benefits; Bone conduction; Bonebridge; Implantation; Quality of life.
© 2019 The Author(s)Published by S. Karger AG, Basel.