Current research with cochlear implants at Arizona State University.


In this article we review, and discuss the clinical implications of, five projects currently underway in the Cochlear Implant Laboratory at Arizona State University. The projects are (1) norming the AzBio sentence test, (2) comparing the performance of bilateral and bimodal cochlear implant (CI) patients in realistic listening environments, (3) accounting for the benefit provided to bimodal patients by low-frequency acoustic stimulation, (4) assessing localization by bilateral hearing aid patients and the implications of that work for hearing preservation patients, and (5) studying heart rate variability as a possible measure for quantifying the stress of listening via an implant. The long-term goals of the laboratory are to improve the performance of patients fit with cochlear implants and to understand the mechanisms, physiological or electronic, that underlie changes in performance. We began our work with cochlear implant patients in the mid-1980s and received our first grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for work with implanted patients in 1989. Since that date our work with cochlear implant patients has been funded continuously by the NIH. In this report we describe some of the research currently being conducted in our laboratory.