Hybrid Cochlear Implants Aid Specific Hearing Loss Hybrid cochlear implants could help improve hearing and speech recognition in people with severe high-frequency hearing loss, according to a multicenter study organized by the New York University Langone Medical Center. Hybrid cochlear implants are used in one ear, instead of two, and are able to preserve more residual, low-frequency ... Research in Brief
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Research in Brief  |   November 01, 2015
Hybrid Cochlear Implants Aid Specific Hearing Loss
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Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Research in Brief
Research in Brief   |   November 01, 2015
Hybrid Cochlear Implants Aid Specific Hearing Loss
The ASHA Leader, November 2015, Vol. 20, 12. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB2.20112015.12
The ASHA Leader, November 2015, Vol. 20, 12. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB2.20112015.12
Hybrid cochlear implants could help improve hearing and speech recognition in people with severe high-frequency hearing loss, according to a multicenter study organized by the New York University Langone Medical Center.
Hybrid cochlear implants are used in one ear, instead of two, and are able to preserve more residual, low-frequency hearing. The device’s shorter electrode is not inserted as deeply into the cochlea.
Early evidence from the study highlights the potential benefit of hybrid cochlear implantation in people with severe high-frequency hearing loss, says lead author J. Thomas Roland, the Mendik Foundation chairman of the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and co-director of the cochlear implant program at NYU Langone.
The study, published in the journal The Laryngoscope, tracked 50 volunteers ranging from 23 to 86 years old (median age: 64) from 10 medical centers and private practices across the United States after researchers implanted each volunteer with a hybrid cochlear implant in one ear. Each participant had high-frequency hearing loss—hearing aids typically cannot raise high-frequency sounds enough to make speech distinguishable—but also had “too much residual hearing to lose,” Roland says, so traditional cochlear implants weren’t a top option.
The volunteers’ hearing was assessed every few months, and 45 of them displayed an overall improvement in hearing and understanding of speech. No participant experienced any decline in the same areas.
With millions of Americans experiencing high-frequency hearing loss—many of whom have trouble at work and in social situations as a result, says Roland—the hybrid could provide help to this specific population.
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November 2015
Volume 20, Issue 11