Disproportionate language impairment in children using cochlear implants.
Hawker K., Ramirez-Inscoe J., Bishop DVM., Twomey T., O'Donoghue GM., Moore DR.
OBJECTIVES: To examine the nature of previously unexplained, severe language impairments in some children using a cochlear implant (CI). DESIGN: Six prelingually deaf children with unexplained, "disproportionate" language problems (DLI group) were matched to Control children on etiology, age at implantation, and CI experience. All children completed a test battery used to identify specific language impairment in normally hearing children. RESULTS: Despite equivalent performance IQ, significant differences were found between the DLI and Control children on all five language tests. CONCLUSIONS: Language difficulties experienced by some children using a CI seem to be additional to those produced by their deafness and may reflect the same, predominantly inherited basis as specific language impairment.