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April 1968

Salicylate Ototoxicity: A Human Temporal Bone Report

Arch Otolaryngol. 1968;87(4):368-372. doi:10.1001/archotol.1968.00760060370005

SALICYLATE ototoxicity is considered a transient phenomenon; this has been known clinically1-3 as well as being shown experimentally.3,4 In the early literature, histologic (morphologic) evidence of the site of toxicity was confusing. Wittmaack5 in 1903 described the disappearance of Nissl bodies and changes in the nuclei of the spiral ganglion cells after quinine administration, and assumed salicylate effect would be similar. In 1913, Lindt6 was unable to confirm these findings. In 1938, Mosher7 described hemorrhage in the cochlea after quinine and salicylate toxicity in guinea pigs as seen in previous quinine studies by Kirchner8 in 1883, but he attributed these hemorrhages to temporal bone removal technique. In his monograph, Falbe-Hansen9 found Reissner's membrane depressed into the cochlear duct more often after salicylates or quinine than in untreated controls, especially when perfused with Wittmaack's fixatives. He interpreted this as evidence of hypotonic changes.