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Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, Scopus
Online ISSN 1827-188X
COCHLEAR IMPLANTS AND OTHER IMPLANTABLE AUDITORY
Neurotology Division, Metropolitan NeuroEar Group, Rockville, Maryland, MD, USA
AIM: This review is a guide to understanding middle ear implants, their mechanism of action, indications, and functional outcomes.
METHODS: A comprehensive literature search was conducted using the MEDLINE electronic database search engine with focus on middle ear implants. Manufacturer online information was reviewed for selected implants.
RESULTS: A total of five semi implantable middle ear devices, including the Med-EL Vibrant Soundbridge, Ototronix Maxum, Soundtec Direct Drive System, Otologics Middle Ear Transducer, and Rion Device E-type, and three fully implantable middle ear devices including the Esteem by Envoy, Otologics Carina, and Totally Implantable Cochlear Amplifier, have been on the market and implanted since the 1980s. The Rion Device E-type and Totally Implantable Cochlear Amplifier are no longer manufactured. The Soundtec Direct Drive System was removed from the market and re-introduced as the Otoronix Maxum System.
CONCLUSION: The future of Middle Ear Implants seems very promising. Middle Ear Implants reduce or eliminate occlusion effect, feedback, and sound distortion associated with modern day digital hearing aids. Functional outcomes are equivalent to or better than hearing aids.