Conductive component after cochlearvimplantation in patients with residual hearing conservation

Richard A. Chole, Timothy E. Hullar, Lisa G. Potts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Purpose: Changes in auditory thresholds following cochlear  mplantation are generally assumed to be due to damage to neural elements. Theoretical studies have suggested that placement of a cochlear implant can cause a conductive hearing loss. Identification of a conductive component following cochlear implantation could guide improvements in surgical techniques or device designs. The purpose of this study is to characterize new-onset conductive hearing losses after cochlear implantation.

Method: In a prospective study, air- and bone-conduction audiometric testing were completed on cochlear implant recipients. An air–bone gap equal to or greater than 15 dB HL at 2 frequencies determined the presence of a conductive component.

Results: Of the 32 patients with preoperative boneconduction hearing, 4 patients had a new-onset conductive component resulting in a mixed hearing loss, with air-conduction thresholds ranging from moderate to profound and an average air–bone gap of 30 dB HL. One had been implanted through the round window, 2 had an extended round window, and 1 had a separate cochleostomy.

Conclusions: Loss of residual hearing following cochlear implantation may be due in part to a conductive component. Identifying the mechanism for this conductive component may help minimize hearing loss. Postoperative hearing evaluation should measure both air- and bone-conduction thresholds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)359-364
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of audiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing


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