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July 1940


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Otolaryngology of the University of Southern California.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1940;32(1):1-15. doi:10.1001/archotol.1940.00660020002001

The history of the fistula operation for otosclerosis has been so frequently detailed that repetition here would be superfluous. From coast to coast a marked and, we believe, unwarranted enthusiasm has been manifested for a new technic1 in creating an opening in the horizontal canal. The failures, attributed by various reporters to imperfect skill, seem to stem but little the prevailing optimism. One piece of experimental work, by Canfield,2 is refreshing and will be followed, it is hoped, by further research and a more careful analysis of the fundamental factors involved in the treatment of progressive deafness.

The first fact unrecognized by the proponents of the fistula operation is that otosclerosis is not only an osseous dystrophy producing an obstruction to sound conduction but is also a disease of the eighth nerve producing perception deafness; so even though a fistula operation should prove to be successful, it could in no