Sequential pediatric bilateral cochlear implantation: The effect of time interval between implants

Giovanni Bianchin, Lorenzo Tribi, Patrizia Formigoni, Carmela Russo, Valeria Polizzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective To examine speech intelligibility in children subjected to sequential bilateral cochlear implants (CI) surgery and to assess the influence of the inter-stage interval duration. Introduction Binaural hearing recovery can have additional benefits, especially in speech and language development in patients with congenital profound sensorineural hearing loss; so recently there has been an increase in the number of children receiving bilateral CI. Methods Twenty-seven children who underwent sequential bilateral cochlear implant (SBCI) with a short (1–3 yrs), medium (4–6 yrs) and long (7–12 yrs) range interval between both implantations, respectively, were evaluated. All patients underwent periodic speech perception test in quiet and noise after second implant activation in three conditions: with the first or second implant alone and with both implants. Results were examined according to the inter-stage interval. Results Speech intelligibility in noise was significantly better under bilateral conditions than either ear alone, in all three groups. Small improvements were seen in quiet, especially in the third group (6–12 yrs). Conclusion Benefits of second implant in the early-implanted children and after a short inter-implant delay are more evident. However our study support that, even after a long period of deafness and despite a prolonged inter-stage interval, sequential bilateral cochlear implantation should be considered. Level of Evidence: Level 4.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-14
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Inter-implant interval
  • Sequential bilateral cochlear implant (SBCI)
  • Speech intelligibility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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