New Cochlear Implant in Development

nym | 11:27 AM


A new cochlear implant is in development. This is particularly good news for patients in four or five years as it means less invasive surgery, which means a lower chance of damage to the patient's ear canal.

The University of Michigan team has developed a cochlear implant from thin-film electrodes that can stimulate the auditory nerve directly. This design allows a much simpler insertion method for surgeons and will definitely prove to be a boon for the hard of hearing. Currently being tested on guinea pigs and cats, this new implant is manufactured in a similar process to integrated circuits, allowing them to be made in batches.

In addition, the implant can hit more nerves, allowing lower frequencies to be activated by the implant:

"The range of frequencies that can be stimulated depends on how far into the cochlea the implant can go, with the lower frequencies located further up toward the apex of the spiral canal," Wise said. In current technology, each implant has anywhere from 16 to 22 stimulating sites along its length. By contrast, the U-M implant will host up to 128 stimulating sites.

"More sites mean greater tonal range and better frequency perception," Wise said, "and the implant's flexibility will minimize damage to existing hearing."

[ Link via ubergizmo ]


so an implantable nerve stimulator ... a very nice one... that can accept input via a microphone type sensor... very nice... /me wonders about the protocols spoken by these...

Posted by: personal at February 15, 2006 05:41 PM

im plan to get one but i try find more info. but cant find only short story about new cochlear so can you mail to my house??? if yes that good i like to learn more DEEEEEP about that one please send to me smile Brian Conklin 1303 W. Juniper Ave apt.2715 Gilbert,Az. 85233 hopeful i get one and hear from you have nice weekend thank you bye.

Posted by: Brian Conklin at September 29, 2006 07:00 AM

I'm very interesting in getting this. would like more information if you forward it to my email that would be great. I have been offered cochlear implant but decide now to wait few more years thanks to this new technology. keep it up let me know if it work on human.

Posted by: Amanda G at June 3, 2007 03:19 PM
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