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Parents' experiences of cochlear implantation for cochlear nerve deficiency Kotjan, Hannah


This research study investigated the experiences of two parents whose child was diagnosed with severe-to-profound hearing loss due to the congenital inner ear abnormalities of cochlear nerve deficiency and bilateral common cavity deformity. Despite her diagnoses, the child received a cochlear implant in her second year of life. Parents’ experiences regarding their child’s hearing loss were explored using a narrative approach to qualitative interviewing. Each parent was interviewed separately and the resulting transcripts were analyzed both separately and together as a dyad. Principles of qualitative description were followed in describing results to privilege the voice of the parents. The parents’ experiences are presented first as a chronologically-organized joint narrative; themes that emerged from one or both interviews are then discussed. Results of this study add valuable insight to the research literature regarding cochlear implantation outcomes for children with cochlear nerve deficiency. This study also supports the value of dyadic analysis in qualitative research, particularly for the fields of speech-language pathology and audiology. Finally, the parents’ experiences depicted in this study draw attention to issues that have important clinical implications for audiologists and other professionals who counsel families of children with hearing loss.

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