Stability of Low-Frequency Residual Hearing in Patients Who Are Candidates for Combined Acoustic Plus Electric Hearing The purpose of this study was to investigate the stability over time of low-frequency auditory thresholds to better determine if the new technique of using a short-electrode cochlear implant that preserves residual low-frequency acoustic hearing can be a long-term solution for those with severe-to-profound hearing loss at high frequencies. The ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 2006
Stability of Low-Frequency Residual Hearing in Patients Who Are Candidates for Combined Acoustic Plus Electric Hearing
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Wai Na Yao
    University of Iowa, Iowa City
  • Christopher W. Turner
    University of Iowa, Iowa City
  • Bruce J. Gantz
    University of Iowa, Iowa City
  • Contact author: Christopher Turner, Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, University of Iowa, 250 Hawkins Drive, Iowa City, IA 52242. E-mail: cwturner@blue.weeg.uiowa.edu
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 2006
Stability of Low-Frequency Residual Hearing in Patients Who Are Candidates for Combined Acoustic Plus Electric Hearing
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2006, Vol. 49, 1085-1090. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/077)
History: Received August 2, 2005 , Accepted February 12, 2006
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2006, Vol. 49, 1085-1090. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/077)
History: Received August 2, 2005; Accepted February 12, 2006

The purpose of this study was to investigate the stability over time of low-frequency auditory thresholds to better determine if the new technique of using a short-electrode cochlear implant that preserves residual low-frequency acoustic hearing can be a long-term solution for those with severe-to-profound hearing loss at high frequencies. The present study determined the long-term rate of decline in acoustic hearing in patients who have a preexisting hearing loss yet have not been implanted with a cochlear implant. A retrospective analysis of patients' audiograms that fit into the range for candidacy for the short-electrode device was performed to calculate the rate of change of threshold over time. The analysis of adult patients' data indicated that there was an average of only 1.05 dB hearing deterioration per year in the low frequencies and that presbycusis accounted for approximately one third to one half of this decline. The average deterioration of hearing threshold for pediatric patients was 1.2 dB per year; however, the rates of change in pediatric patients were considerably more variable (across individuals and across frequencies) than in adults. These data provide support for the idea that the short-electrode cochlear implant may be a practical solution for most adults in the long run, but this may not be the case for all pediatric patients.

Acknowledgments
Funding for this research was provided in part by Grants 2 P50 DC00242 and 1RO1DC000377 from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, and by Grant RR00059 from the General Clinical Research Centers Program of the National Center for Research Resources, National Institutes of Health.
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