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March 1956

End-Organ Deafness: Diagnosis and Significance

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1956;63(3):262-269. doi:10.1001/archotol.1956.03830090034008

The differential diagnosis of lesions of the inner ear and of the acoustic nerve is often difficult and uncertain. Any means of clarifying the problem merits attention. The value of carefully interpreted tests of hearing has been emphasized in recent years. Study of the results of tests of hearing has led to the concept of end-organ deafness as an entity which may be distinguished from deafness of neural origin.

The term "end-organ deafness" is widely accepted in current literature, replacing the terms "cochlear deafness," "inner ear deafness," and "inner ear conduction deafness."

Mygind1 in 1947 presented a classification of deafness which recognized the division of perceptive deafness into two groups: that of end-organ origin, which Mygind referred to as humoral, and that of nervous origin (Table 1).

Other observers had previously described various phenomena now associated with end-organ deafness. Ménière2 in 1861 called attention to bass deafness in