Libyan cochlear implant programme: achievements, difficulties, and future goals
Cochlear implantation has become established worldwide as a safe and effective method of auditory rehabilitation of selected severely and profound deaf children and adults. Over 100,000 patients have received cochlear implants worldwide with the paediatric population proving to be the main beneficiaries. The Libyan cochlear implant programme was set up in 2004. Data relating to the patients who received cochlear implantation at Tripoli Medical Centre between October 2007 and February 2010 were analysed. Implant operations were performed on 37 patients. All patients received Med-El SONATATI100 devices. Thirty-four (91.9%) of these patients were children, whilst three (8.1%) were adults. Combined, congenital hearing loss (56.8%) and perinatal/neonatal (29.7%) were the two main aetiological factors in children. Seventeen patients (45.9%) had a positive family history of deafness. Sixteen patients (43.2%) were born to blood-related parents. The overall rate of minor and major complications was 16.2%, which is comparable to previous studies.
Keywords: Cochlear implants; Libya; Tripoli Medical Centre; hearing loss; consanguinity