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Complications of post-cochlear implantation in 1027 adults and children

Roa Halawani, Ahmad Aldhafeeri, Sulumain Alajlan, Farid Alzhrani 

King Abdullah Ear Specialist Center (KAESC), College of Medicine , King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

How to cite this article:

Halawani R, Alzhrani F, Aldhafeeri A, Alajlan S. Complications of post-cochlear implantation in 1027 adults and children. Ann Saudi Med 39(2): 77-81.



BACKGROUND: The number of cochlear implant (CI) recipients is increasing so there needs to be greater awareness of possible CI complications. 


OBJECTIVES: Describe complications of CI.


DESIGN: Retrospective, descriptional.


SETTINGS: Tertiary health care center.


PATIENTS AND METHODS: Data was collected by retrospective chart review on complications for recipients implanted for the period from January 2006 to June 2017.


MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Major and minor post cochlear implantation complications. 


SAMPLE SIZE: 1027 cochlear implant recipients.


RESULTS: Post-operative complications were reported in 105 patients (10.2%). Minor complications were most often encountered (9.5%). Swelling (wound seroma or hematoma) was the most common complication. The major complication rate was only 7/105, 0.7%. Meningitis did not occur and cholesteatoma occurred in only one patient. 


CONCLUSION: CI is a safe surgical procedure at our center. We believe that this is probably due to the preoperative protocol, the surgical technique used, and the postoperative care conducted for all our patients. Despite this, it is important that both physicians and patients have knowledge of the possible consequences and risks posed by CI, especially in view of the fact that these patients require lifetime follow-up.


LIMITATIONS: Further studies are needed, and should include more ENT centers across all regions of Saudi Arabia.





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