gms | German Medical Science

76th Annual Meeting of the German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Head and Neck Surgery

German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Head and Neck Surgery

04.05. - 08.05.2005, Erfurt

Cochlear implantation in case of deaf-blindness following meningitis

Meeting Abstract

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Hals-Nasen-Ohren-Heilkunde, Kopf- und Hals-Chirurgie. 76. Jahresversammlung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Hals-Nasen-Ohren-Heilkunde, Kopf- und Hals-Chirurgie e.V.. Erfurt, 04.-08.05.2005. Düsseldorf, Köln: German Medical Science; 2005. Doc05hno569

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Published: September 22, 2005

© 2005 Haensel et al.
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Introduction: Cochlear implantation is a well established procedure for hearing restoration in pre- and postlingually deaf patients. Due to the very limited capabilities of communication, cochlear implantation in deaf-blind patients require special standards for preoperative examinations and postoperative rehabilitation.

Methods: We report on a 68 year old female, who went deaf and blind following a pneumococcal meningitis. Preoperative findings, intraoperative complications and the postoperative rehabilitation process were analyzed. We examined the quality of life of the patient by using a standardized questionnaire.

Results: Following a vitrektomy on both eyes due to a exsudative amotio retinae we implanted the Pulsar® implant by MED-EL bilaterally. Interaoperatively minor ossifications of the cochlea were seen, which caused no difficulties in a full insertion of the array. The audiological rehabilitation was realized by means of tactile stimulation. Three months after implantation the patient reached 100% multi- and 55% monosyllabic word recognition. The patient and her family reported on a improving quality of life with the cochlear implant. There are only minor improvements in the residual vision of the patient.

Conclusion: Considering the very limited capabilities of communication and the high motivation in case of deaf-blindness, there is a recognizable benefit in these patients after cochlear implantation. However a very intensive rehabilitation process in deaf-blind patients is essentially required.