The COVID-19 pandemic and upgrades of CI speech processors for children: part II-hearing outcomes

Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2022 Oct;279(10):4815-4823. doi: 10.1007/s00405-022-07324-8. Epub 2022 Mar 14.


Purpose: To gauge the benefits to children of upgrading speech processors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: The study involved 297 children, aged from 7.3 to 18.0 years, whose processors were upgraded to either Nucleus 7 or Kanso 2, or to Sonnet 2 or Rondo 3. To document the benefits of the upgrades, a speech-in-noise discrimination test and Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) were used.

Results: There was a significant benefit from the newer processors in terms of speech discrimination in noise. Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) indicated less hearing disability, a higher level of functioning in everyday life situations, and more satisfaction with the new speech processor in social situations.

Conclusion: There is a measurable improvement in performance when the devices are upgraded to the new technology.

Keywords: COVID-19; Cochlear implant; Pediatric; Upgrade.

MeSH terms

  • COVID-19* / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Cochlear Implantation*
  • Cochlear Implants*
  • Hearing
  • Humans
  • Pandemics
  • Speech
  • Speech Perception*