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Laryngoscope. 1999 Feb;109(2 Pt 1):181-5.

Cochlear implantation in auditory neuropathy.

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Department of Otolaryngology--Head and Neck Surgery, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis 46202, USA.



Auditory neuropathy is a recently described clinical entity characterized by sensorineural hearing loss in which the auditory evoked potential (ABR) is absent but otoacoustic emissions are present. This suggests a central locus for the associated hearing loss. In this study the results observed in a child with auditory neuropathy who received a cochlear implant are presented and compared with those of a matched group of children who were recipients of implants.


A single-subject, repeated-measures design, evaluating closed-set and open-set word recognition abilities was used to assess the subject and a control group of matched children with implants who had also experienced a progressive sensorineural hearing loss.


The subject demonstrated improvements in vowel recognition (82% correct) by 1 year after implantation, which were only slightly lower than the control group. Consonant recognition and open-set word recognition scores were significantly lower.


Caution should be exercised when considering cochlear implantation in children with auditory neuropathy. As with conventional hearing aids, less than optimal results may be seen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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