Last updated on January 2019

Maintaining Cochlear Patency After VIIIth Nerve Surgery

Brief description of study

Tumors arising from the VIIIth Nerve (vestibulo-cochlear nerve) typically present with progressive unilateral hearing loss and tinnitus. VIIIth Nerve tumors with documented growth on serial MRI scans typically lead to deafness in the affected ear over time. Radiation (Gamma Knife or stereotactic radiosurgery) may preserve hearing in ~80% while surgery (middle cranial fossa or retrosigmoid approach) may preserve hearing in 16 - 40% of small tumors, although initial hearing preservation by both modalities may fail over time. Surgical resection via the translabyrinthine approach is the safest way to remove many of these tumors, but involves loss of all hearing. In all treatment modalities, the vascular supply (the labyrinthine artery, a terminal branch of AICA with no collaterals) to the cochlea is at risk. After devascularization, the cochlea frequently fills with fibrous tissue or ossifies (labyrinthitis ossificans), making it impossible to place a cochlear implant should it be required later. The incidence of this is 46% in our patients. This study seeks to determine the feasibility of preserving the cochlear duct with an obdurator so that patients undergoing translabyrinthine removal of VIIIth nerve tumors may retain the option of a cochlear implant at a later time.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03261726

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The Michigan Ear Institute

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