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Effect of early intervention for permanent childhood hearing impairment on outcome at secondary school age.
This Wellcome Trust-funded study was completed in June 2013.The research team is continuing to write up the results for publication.This was a follow-up study of 120 young people with PCHI, now in their teens, from a 1992-97 birth cohort. Half of them were the target for UNS in the newborn period and the target population includes all cases of PCHI in the birth cohort enrolled in our previous controlled trial of UNS for PCHI. We will also study a normally hearing comparison group from the same cohort. Eight years ago, we found that exposure to UNS was followed by benefits to language and reading at primary school age in the same study group. In the proposed study, we will assess reading, language, non-verbal ability, school attainment, behaviour, quality of life, interpersonal relationship functioning, social understanding and views about their deafness and their education This study has unique strength to determine the benefits of UNS at secondary school age and the predictive value of levels of function at primary school age for benefits at teen age. Key goals include assessing communicative abilities appropriately for the young person’s mode of communication and inclusion of other outcomes of greatest relevance to the young people and their families, such as school performance, social interactions and quality of life.
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