GJB2 mutations account for about half of all autosomal recessive, nonsyndromic hearing loss (NSHL). The literature is inconclusive in regards to speech and language (SL) outcomes for this population after cochlear implantation. The goal of this study is to correlate GJB2–related NSHL with SL outcomes in our cochlear implant (CI) population. We reviewed records on children with NSHL who received a new CI at Children’s of Alabama before age four years and whose GJB2 status is known. We found that those with GJB2-related HL do show better SL outcomes after cochlear implantation compared to individuals with non-GJB2-related HL. Overall, GJB2-status does impact SL outcomes, although more research is also needed to define the magnitude and impact of other factors, including parental noncompliance.

The UAB genetic counselling program is designed to lead to professional certification through the American Board of Genetic Counseling, Inc (ABGC). While there is a national certification exam offered by ABGC, board certification does not confer state licensure. Specific licensure requirements vary from state to state. UAB is working to develop an online, publicly-accessible database to assist in providing this state-by-state information. In the meantime, if you are interested in learning about potential professional licensure requirements in your state for a specific degree program, please contact UAB State Authorization at stateauth@uab.edu, or call eLearning and Professional Learning S staff at (205) 934-3258.