Whether long-term intracochlear implantation and direct electrical stimulation of the acoustic nerve will induce intracochlear bone growth or cause further degeneration of a severely compromised auditory system is an important clinical consideration. Thin-section CT evaluations of the cochleas of six subjects who have used their cochlear implant devices on a daily basis for 3 or more years demonstrated no evidence of osteoneogenesis of the cochlea in the vicinity of the active electrode. No corrosion of the electrode or insulation material was noted on electron microscopy of an explanted electrode system. Electrical threshold and dynamic range measurements have remained stable or even improved during the period of observation. Performance measures using a variety of audiologic tests and speech-tracking scores have demonstrated stability of performance.
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