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Otorinolaringologia 2010 December;60(4):245-52

Copyright © 2010 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Hearing restoration with a central auditory prosthesis in neurofibromatosis type II

Lenarz M., Lim H., Lenarz T.

Department of Otolaryngology, Medical University of Hannover, Hannover, Niedersachsen, Germany


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Due to the lack of a functional auditory nerve most of the neurofibromatosis Type 2 patients cannot benefit from a cochlear implant. A central auditory prosthesis that bypasses the injured auditory nerve and directly stimulates the central auditory system may provide some degrees of speech recognition in these patients. Currently the results of hearing restoration with various types of central auditory prosthesis (auditory brainstem implant, penetrating auditory brainstem implant and auditory midbrain implant) seem to be similar in NF2 patients. All these implants though stimulating different parts of the central auditory pathway and having different designs and concepts, provide NF2 patients with awareness of environmental sounds and improve their speech recognition when the implant is used in addition to lipreading cues. A minority of NF2 patients can reach high levels of lipreading enhancement with their implants, however only in very rare cases significant amounts of speech recognition without the help of lipreading can be achieved. The current research in the filed of central auditory prosthesis may enable us improve the speech recognition in NF2 patients in near future!

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