Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate the functional benefits of young adults with bilateral cochlear implants (CIs) in comparison with those with unilateral CIs and those with normal hearing (NH), to assess whether demographic and performance factors can predict the functional listening performance for each CI group, and to examine the predictors of functional listening performance for bilateral and unilateral CI groups. Methods: Fifteen young adults with sequential bilateral CIs, 15 adults with unilateral CIs, and 15 adults with NH participated in this study. The functional listening performance in daily life was measured using the Speech, Spatial, and Qualities of hearing scale (SSQ). Results: Adults with bilateral CIs showed significantly better performance in all three sections (speech perception, spatial hearing, other qualities of hearing) than those with unilateral CIs, although they showed significantly poorer performance than those with NH on the SSQ. In the unilateral CI group, speech perception and receptive vocabulary scores contributed significant amount to the functional listening performance. In the logistic regression analysis, the rating of other qualities of hearing was a significant predictor for differentiating between the bilateral and unilateral CI group. Conclusion: Young adults who received sequential bilateral cochlear implantation achieved functional binaural benefits in daily life. These results were vital in counseling adolescents, young adults, and their families to make decisions regarding the second implantation.
- Congenital deafness
- Functional listening performance
- Sequential bilateral cochlear implantation
- Young adults