Dr. Buchman said these kinds of cases are difficult. “These patients that have significant low-frequency loss but potentially enough hearing to preserve—it’s hard to know what electrode to pull; it’s hard to know what kind of surgery to do; it’s hard to know whether it should be on the lateral wall or modiolar,” he said. “When patients have lots of low-frequency hearing, I don’t think it’s that difficult a decision. But this particular spot, I think, is the cutting edge of trying to understand how we should act.”
Explore this issue:March 2017
The patient received a CI as part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services expanded criteria study, and has seen “nice gains” in his hearing. Dr. Buchman added, “I think the story is that the Medicare criteria are just still way too stringent.”
Thomas Collins is a freelance medical writer based in Florida.