Labyrinthectomy with cochlear implantation

T. A. Zwolan, N. T. Shepard, J. K. Niparko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Numerous reports indicate that the cochlea remains responsive to electrical stimulation following labyrinthectomy. We report a case of a 47-year-old woman with a severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss from birth, who developed episodic vertigo with symptoms suggestive of delayed onset endolymphatic hydrops. Following 8 months of failed medical and vestibular rehabilitation management, a right-sided labyrinthectomy combined with cochlear implantation was performed without complication. Postoperatively the patient was free of vertigo. Attempts to activate the patient's device between 4 to 12 weeks after surgery were unsuccessful as stimulation of the electrodes resulted in discomfort. However, all 20 electrodes elicited comfortable hearing sensations 16 weeks postsurgery. One year after the successful activation, the patient demonstrated improved sound awareness and speech recognition with the implant when compared with preoperative performance with a hearing aid. This case study suggests that electrical detection thresholds with prosthetic stimulation may be unstable in the recently labyrinthectomized ear but supports and extends prior observations of preserved cochlear responsiveness after labyrinthectomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)220-223
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Otology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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