Long-Term Trajectories of the Development of Speech Sound Production in Pediatric Cochlear Implant Recipients
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research Volume 51, Number 5, ISSN 1092-4388
Purpose: This study characterized the development of speech sound production in prelingually deaf children with a minimum of 8 years of cochlear implant (CI) experience. Method: Twenty-seven pediatric CI recipients' spontaneous speech samples from annual evaluation sessions were phonemically transcribed. Accuracy for these speech samples was evaluated in piecewise regression models. Results: As a group, pediatric CI recipients showed steady improvement in speech sound production following implantation, but the improvement rate declined after 6 years of device experience. Piecewise regression models indicated that the slope estimating the participants' improvement rate was statistically greater than 0 during the first 6 years postimplantation, but not after 6 years. The group of pediatric CI recipients' accuracy of speech sound production after 4 years of device experience reasonably predicts their speech sound production after 5-10 years of device experience. Conclusions: The development of speech sound production in prelingually deaf children stabilizes after 6 years of device experience, and typically approaches a plateau by 8 years of device use. Early growth in speech before 4 years of device experience did not predict later rates of growth or levels of achievement. However, good predictions could be made after 4 years of device use.
Tomblin, J.B., Peng, S.C., Spencer, L.J. & Lu, N. (2008). Long-Term Trajectories of the Development of Speech Sound Production in Pediatric Cochlear Implant Recipients. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 51(5), 1353-1368.