Meningitis and Cochlear Implants

The FDA has informed health care professionals and consumers that the Cochlear Implant device used by deaf and hearing-impaired patients has been associated with an increased risk of bacterial meningitis caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae. Children with these implants that have a positioner component are considered to be at a greater risk.

Within the past year, two children, 9 and 11 years of age, died as a result of meningitis. Neither child had received a full round of vaccinations, and the cause of death was attributed to this omission in one of the children.

(Source: FDA, October 10, 2007.)