Older adults with mild or no hearing loss make more errors and expend more effort listening to speech. Cochlear implants (CI) restore hearing to deaf patients but with limited fidelity. We hypothesized that patient-reported hearing and health-related quality of life in CI patients may similarly vary according to age. Speech Spatial Qualities (SSQ) of hearing scale and Health Utilities Index Mark III (HUI) questionnaires were administered to 543 unilaterally implanted adults across Europe, South Africa, and South America. Data were acquired before surgery and at 1, 2, and 3 years post-surgery. Data were analyzed using linear mixed models with visit, age group (18–34, 35–44, 45–54, 55–64, and 65+), and side of implant as main factors and adjusted for other covariates. Tinnitus and dizziness prevalence did not vary with age, but older groups had more preoperative hearing. Preoperatively and postoperatively, SSQ scores were significantly higher (Δ0.75–0.82) for those aged
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- hearing loss
- cochlear implant
- speech spatial and qualities of hearing scale
- age effect
- hemispheric dominance
- quality of life