Role of auditory brain function assessment by SPECT in cochlear implant side selection

Walter Di Nardo, Daniela Di Giuda, E. De Corso, L. Schinaia, Gaetano Paludetti

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivistapeer review

3 Citazioni (Scopus)


Pre-surgery evaluation, indications for cochlear implantation and expectations in terms of post-operative functional results remain challenging topics in pre-lingually deaf adults. Our study has the purpose of determining the benefits of Single Photon Emission Tomography (SPECT) assessment in pre-surgical evaluation of pre-lingually deaf adults who are candidates for cochlear implantation. In 7 pre-lingually profoundly deaf patients, brain SPECT was performed at baseline conditions and in bilateral simultaneous multi-frequency acoustic stimulation. Six sagittal tomograms of both temporal cortices were used for semi-quantitative analysis in each patient. Percentage increases in cortical perfusion resulting from auditory stimulation were calculated. The results showed an inter-hemispherical asymmetry of the activation extension and intensity in the stimulated temporal areas. Consistent with the obtained brain activation data, patients were implanted preferring the side that showed higher activation after acoustic stimulus. Considering the increment in auditory perception performances, it was possible to point out a relationship between cortical brain activity shown by SPECT and hearing performances, and, even more significant, a correlation between post-operative functional performances and the activation of the most medial part of the sagittal temporal tomograms, corresponding to medium-high frequencies. In light of these findings, we believe that brain SPECT could be considered in the evaluation of deaf patients candidate for cochlear implantation, and that it plays a major role in functional assessment of the auditory cortex of pre-lingually deaf subjects, even if further studies are necessary to conclusively establish its utility. Further developments of this technique are possible by using trans-tympanic electrical stimulation of the cochlear promontory, which could give the opportunity to study completely deaf patients, whose evaluation is objectively difficult with current audiological methods.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)23-28
Numero di pagine6
RivistaActa Otorhinolaryngologica Italica
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2013




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