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February 1990

Promontory Electrical Stimulation in Labyrinthectomized Ears

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, University of Virginia Health Sciences Center, Charlottesville.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116(2):197-201. doi:10.1001/archotol.1990.01870020073019

• Bilateral deafness can occur in patients with Meniere's disease who have undergone a labyrinthectomy in one ear. To investigate the feasibility of a cochlear implant in the labyrinthectomized ear, promontory electrical testing by transtympanic needle was performed in six patients who had undergone a unilateral transmastoid labyrinthectomy 6 weeks to 5 years previously. All patients had a behavioral response to the stimulus, and each described a different pitch percept with the four frequencies used. Five of the patients demonstrated an electrically evoked middle latency response. These data are comparable with behavioral and electrophysiologic responses from ears deafened by other causes and now successfully implanted. The results suggest that peripheral neural elements and central auditory pathways remain at least partially functional many years after a labyrinthectomy. Thus, a labyrinthectomy should not be withheld as a surgical option if otherwise indicated.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116:197-201)

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