The purpose of this study was to evaluate changes that occur over time in the electrical stimulation levels of cochlear implant users. A retrospective review of program summaries for 26 postlingually deafened adult Nucleus cochlear implant users was completed. Program summaries were used to assess changes in electrical stimulation at threshold (T) and maximum comfort (C) levels. Comparisons were made at intervals including the subject's initial stimulation and 2-week, 3-month, 6-month, 1-year, and most recent programming sessions. Five patients had 5 years or more of implant use; 8 patients had 3 to 5 years or more of implant use; and the remainder had been using their implant for 2 to 3 years. No patient with less than 2 years of implant use was included. Results indicated that changes in stimulation levels occur gradually over time. Although the changes in stimulation levels from one programming session to the next were not significant, the changes in current requirements for both T and C levels were found to be significant when we compared the 6-month and most recent programming intervals.
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