Cochlear Implant in Unilateral Hearing Loss: What Do the Professionals Think About?
Introduction: Currently, the CI implantation in children is an important resource for language development because it is the period of greatest potential of brain plasticity, learning, and development of auditory skills.
Objective: To know the opinion of professionals in the area of indication of CI in unilateral sensorioneural hearing loss in children, taking into consideration, the ethical and social aspects, and the children development.
Method: The research was developed from data collection through an online form. Researchers asked that only professionals who work or have worked with CI to answer the survey.
Results: A total of 233 forms were answered, 38% from speech therapists who work with rehabilitation, 39% from audiologists who work with diagnosis, 15% by ear, nose, and throat physicians (ENT), and 8% for other professionals. Among audiologists, 35% have treated users of CI and 33% already does it. Nine percent of ENT currently realizes CI surgery and 1% already did it. So far, 65% responded in favor of surgery of CI in unilateral sensorioneural hearing loss against 13% who are against.
Conclusion: Most professionals indicate initially using hearing aid, part of them emphasizes rehabilitation and another part the use of CI. The index of answers from professionals in favor of CI surgery unilateral hearing loss shows that despite being a subject little explored, a subject that arouses interest and points the professionals’ concern about the development of language and central auditory skills of this group of children.