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April 1958

Editorial Comment

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1958;67(4):427. doi:10.1001/archotol.1958.00730010439008

In the paper, "New Middle Ear Mechanisms for Normal Hearing," * Dr. Samuel Rosen presents case reports showing remarkable postoperative audiograms in situations where the entire ossicular chain has been disrupted and a fenestra placed in the footplate without continuity with ossicles or eardrum. He states that his findings seriously challenge the Helmholtz theory of hearing and the many observations of recent physiologists. In cases with an intact drum, a closed middle ear, and no ossicular continuity, Rosen is nevertheless able to demonstrate normal hearing through the function of an open fenestra in the footplate of the stapes.

These observations are, of course, disturbing to all currently accepted theories of middle ear function. It is difficult to reconcile these reports with other observations by the same author in which he shows equally excellent results where ossicular continuity was maintained. One wonders as to the fate of the average 26 db. contributed

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