Virtually every branch of the specialty of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery has benefited from significant advances.
Remarkable strides have been reported in the treatment of sensorineural deafness with the use of an implanted cochlear prosthesis (a miniaturized electronic transducer designed to stimulate electrically the remaining population of eighth-nerve neurons in the cochlea of profoundly deaf persons). The patients receiving implants benefit from this procedure by their ability to discriminate sound intensity differences and pitch differences below 500 to 1,000 Hz (low-frequency sounds). They are not able to understand speech, but they can distinguish differences in the duration and rhythm of sounds, and they are better able to appreciate different environmental sounds and to communicate with others by speech reading (lip-reading). House et al1 report that these encouraging improvements are seen in a study series of 43 deaf children who received cochlear implants. Although a number of technical, surgical, economic,
Bailey BJ. Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. JAMA. 1984;252(16):2249–2251. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350160117035
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