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Research Scholarship - 2019

Detecting and removing intra-cochlear blood during cochlear implantation to preserve hearing
Tayla Razmovski

Project Description

Bleeding within the cochlea has detrimental effects on hearing and the efficacy of cochlear implants. Bleeding may occur at the time of implantation and has been shown to correlate with greater post-operative hearing loss. Up until now, it has not been possible to detect blood in the cochlea at the time of surgery. If this can be achieved, it may be possible to clear the blood before the detriment occurs and in doing so limit the post-operative hearing loss. This would be expected to improve patient outcomes, and future-proof the ear for future regenerative therapies. This thesis will explore methods for the detection of blood within the cochlea and strategies for its removal in clinical practice. Two potential approaches are the washing/flushing of the cochlea and/or the application of pharmacological agents. This work will guide the development of clinical protocols to eliminate blood from the cochleae of cochlear implant recipients which will be tested in clinical trials.

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