An open-ended questionnaire was administered to 53 of some of the better patients using five different kinds of cochlear implants. The subjects listed the advantages and disadvantages of their cochlear implant. Patients were asked about the time from implantation until maximum benefit and effect of the cochlear implant on tinnitus. Advantages were reported in (1) speech perception when speechreading can be used (85%); (2) environmental sound perception (75%); (3) psychologic effects (70%); (4) speech perception when speechreading cannot be used (64%); (5) lifestyle and social effects (42%); and (6) speech production (32%). Disadvantages were reported in (1) use of equipment (79%); (2) environmental-sound perception (47%); (3) speech perception when speechreading may be used (17%); (4) psychologic effects (11%); (5) speech perception when speechreading is not used (9%); (6) lifestyle and social effects (3.8%); and (7) speech production (1.9%). Ninety-one percent of the subjects indicated that they achieved maximum benefit in the first 7 months of cochlear-implant use. Eighty-one percent of the subjects with tinnitus indicated that the cochlear implant had a positive effect on their tinnitus. In 17 percent of the cases the cochlear implant had no effect on their tinnitus and in 2 percent of the cases it made the tinnitus worse.
© 1990, The American Journal of Otology, Inc.