Evaluating the Revised Work Rehabilitation Questionnaire in Cochlear Implant Users Cochlear Implant Outcome Assessment Based on the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF).

Ellen Andries, Artur Lorens, Piotr Skarzynski, Henryk Skarzynski, Miryam Calvino, Javier Gavilan, Luis Lassaletta, Dayse Tavora-Vieira, Aanand Acharya, Anja Kurz, Rudolph Hagen, Ilona Anderson, Edda Amann, Paul Van de Heyning, Vincent Van Rompaey, Griet Mertens

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Abstract

Objectives: The 59-item Work Rehabilitation Questionnaire (WORQ) was developed based on the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) core set for vocational rehabilitation to assess work related functioning. It was revised to include 17 questions, assigned to 14 ICF categories relevant to cochlear implant (CI) users. This cross-sectional multicenter study aimed to evaluate CI users' responses on the WORQ questions to describe and generate ICF qualifiers for the revised WORQ in CI users, forming part of a broader framework of CI outcome measures linked to the ICF. Methods: One hundred seventy-seven adults over the age of 18 years with a minimum of one year's device experience were included in the analysis. The WORQ was completed by the participants at a routine visit to the clinic, via email, or via post. Results: Most of the CI users perceived no problem on the WORQ questions (53.7%-91%), finished secondary school (54.2%) or obtained a college or university degree (32.8%) and are either employed (41.2%) or retired (34.5%). CI users that are currently working mostly have a full-time position (34.5%). Subjects reported no problem (91%) with sensation of falling, while handling communication devices and techniques (10.9%) and tinnitus (9.6%) showed the highest number of subjects reporting a complete problem. Conclusions: Overall, most of the CI users experienced no impairment, restriction or limitation on the WORQ questions and their assigned ICF categories. Their education level resembles the education level of the general population and they seem to integrate or reintegrate well in professional life postoperatively.

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