Article  |   April 2012
Cochlear Implant in the Second Year of Life: Lexical and Grammatical Outcomes
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Maria Cristina Caselli
    Istituto di Scienze e Tecnologie della Cognizione, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Rome, Italy
  • Pasquale Rinaldi
    Istituto di Scienze e Tecnologie della Cognizione, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Rome, Italy
  • Cristiana Varuzza
    Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesù, Rome, Italy
  • Anna Giuliani
    Servizio di Audiovestibologia, Ospedale di Circolo Fondazione Macchi, Varese, Italy
  • Sandro Burdo
    Servizio di Audiovestibologia, Ospedale di Circolo Fondazione Macchi, Varese, Italy
  • Corresponding to Maria Cristina Caselli: cristina.caselli@istc.cnr.it
  • Editor: Janna Oetting
    Editor: Janna Oetting×
  • Associate Editor: Elizabeth Crais
    Associate Editor: Elizabeth Crais×
  • © 2012 American Speech-Language-Hearing AssociationAmerican Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Language
Article   |   April 2012
Cochlear Implant in the Second Year of Life: Lexical and Grammatical Outcomes
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2012, Vol. 55, 382-394. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2011/10-0248)
History: Received September 3, 2010 , Revised February 17, 2011 , Accepted August 14, 2011
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2012, Vol. 55, 382-394. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2011/10-0248)
History: Received September 3, 2010; Revised February 17, 2011; Accepted August 14, 2011
Web of Science® Times Cited: 12

Purpose: The authors studied the effect of the cochlear implant (CI) on language comprehension and production in deaf children who had received a CI in the 2nd year of life.

Method: The authors evaluated lexical and morphosyntactic skills in comprehension and production in 17 Italian children who are deaf (M = 54 months of age) with a CI and in 2 control groups of children with normal hearing (NH; 1 matched for chronological age and the other whose chronological age corresponded to the duration of CI activation). The authors also compared children with unilateral CI to children with bilateral CI.

Results: Children with CI appeared to keep pace with NH children matched for time since CI activation in terms of language acquisition, and they were similar to same-age NH children in lexical production. However, children with CI showed difficulties in lexical comprehension when a task required phonological discrimination as well as in grammar comprehension and production. Children with bilateral CI showed better comprehension than did children with unilateral CI; the 2 groups were similar for production.

Conclusions: Activation of CI in the 2nd year of life may provide children who are deaf with a good opportunity to develop language skills, although some limitations in phonological and morphological skills are still present 3 years after auditory reafferentation.

Acknowledgments
This research was partially supported by a grant provided to the first author by the Fondazione Audiologica Varese onlus and the Nando Peretti Foundation (Grant 2010-62). We would like to thank Francesca Baruffaldi for her assistance in preparing the revised form of the manuscript. We are very grateful to Mark Kanieff for his helpful comments and for the revision of English. We especially thank the children and parents who participated in the study.
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