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Reconstruction of middle ear malformations

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Author(s): Schwager, Konrad

Journal: GMS Current Topics in Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery
ISSN 1865-1011

Volume: 6;
Start page: Doc01;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Keywords: middle ear malformation | congenital oral atresia | surgical treatment | bone anchored hearing aid | implantable hearing aid

ABSTRACT
Malformations of the middle ear are classified as minor and major malformations. Minor malformations appear with regular external auditory canal, tympanic membrane and aerated middle ear space. The conducting hearing loss is due to fixation or interruption of the ossicular chain. The treatment is surgical, following the rules of ossiculoplasty and stapes surgery. In major malformations (congenital aural atresia) there is no external auditory canal and a deformed or missing pinna. The mastoid and the middle ear space may be underdevelopped, the ossicular chain is dysplastic. Surgical therapy is possible in patients with good aeration of the temporal bone, existing windows, a near normal positioned facial nerve and a mobile ossicular chain. Plastic and reconstructive surgery of the pinna should proceed the reconstruction of the external auditory canal and middle ear. In cases of good prognosis unilateral aural atresia can be approached already in childhood. In patients with high risk of surgical failure, bone anchored hearing aids are the treatment of choice. Recent reports of implantable hearing devices may be discussed as an alternative treatment for selected patients.
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