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Long?term Impact of Hearing Aid Provision or Cochlear Implantation on Hearing Handicap

Kim, Alexander S.; Betz, Joshua F.; Nieman, Carrie L.; Hoyer, Matthew R.; Applebaum, Jeremy; Lin, Frank R.; Goman, Adele M.


Alexander S. Kim

Joshua F. Betz

Carrie L. Nieman

Matthew R. Hoyer

Jeremy Applebaum

Frank R. Lin


Previous research has shown hearing handicap to be reduced following hearing aid use or cochlear implantation in short-to-medium follow-up periods, yet the impact of interventions for hearing loss on hearing handicap in the long term remains understudied. This article reports hearing handicap at 6?months, 12?months, and 5?years after either hearing aid provision or cochlear implantation.

Study Design
Observational study.

A study of 115 participants from the Studying Multiple Outcomes after Aural Rehabilitative Treatment (SMART) study cohort assessed self-reported hearing handicap using the Hearing Handicap Inventory for the Elderly Screening version (HHIE-S) at baseline, 6?months, 12?months, and 5?years. Generalized estimating equations (GEE) were used to estimate the population mean HHIE-S score over time, accounting for the correlated nature of repeated measures data, and multiple imputation with chained equations was performed to impute missing data.

Compared to baseline, mean HHIE-S scores after hearing aid provision were significantly reduced at 6?months (mean = ?7.96, 95% confidence interval [CI]: ?10.40, ?5.53), 12?months (mean = ?6.58, 95% CI: ?9.26, ?3.90), and 5?years (mean = ?4.58, 95% CI: ?7.87, ?1.30). After cochlear implantation, mean hearing handicap scores were also significantly lower compared to baseline at 6?months (mean = ?8.18, 95% CI: ?11.07, ?5.30), 12?months (mean = ?10.04, 95% CI: ?12.92, ?7.16), and 5?years (mean = ?8.97, 95% CI: ?12.92, ?7.16).

This study found short-term benefits from hearing aids and cochlear implantation on hearing handicap were maintained over 5?years.


Kim, A. S., Betz, J. F., Nieman, C. L., Hoyer, M. R., Applebaum, J., Lin, F. R., & Goman, A. M. (2021). Long?term Impact of Hearing Aid Provision or Cochlear Implantation on Hearing Handicap. Laryngoscope, 131(5), 1122-1126.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 28, 2020
Online Publication Date Nov 2, 2020
Publication Date 2021-05
Deposit Date Oct 7, 2021
Journal The Laryngoscope
Print ISSN 0023-852X
Electronic ISSN 1531-4995
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 131
Issue 5
Pages 1122-1126
Keywords Hearing loss, hearing handicap, hearing aids, cochlear implant, long-term outcomes
Public URL