Cochlear implantation after radiosurgery for vestibular schwannoma

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  • 1 Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, and
  • 2 Department of Neurologic Surgery, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
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OBJECTIVE

The object of this study was to ascertain outcomes of cochlear implantation (CI) following stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) for vestibular schwannoma (VS).

METHODS

The authors conducted a retrospective chart review of adult patients with VS treated with SRS who underwent CI between 1990 and 2019 at a single tertiary care referral center. Patient demographics, tumor features, treatment parameters, and pre- and postimplantation audiometric and clinical outcomes are presented.

RESULTS

Seventeen patients (18 ears) underwent SRS and ipsilateral CI during the study period. Thirteen patients (76%) had neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2). Median age at SRS and CI were 44 and 48 years, respectively. Median time from SRS to CI was 60 days, but notably, 4 patients underwent SRS and CI within 1 day and 5 patients underwent CI more than 7 years after SRS. Median marginal dose was 13 Gy. Median treatment volume at the time of SRS was 1400 mm3 (range 84–6080 mm3, n = 15 patients). Median post-CI PTA was 28 dB HL, improved from 101 dB HL preoperatively (p < 0.001). Overall, 11 patients (12 ears) exhibited open-set speech understanding. Sentence testing was performed at a median of 10 months (range 1–143 months) post-CI. The median AzBio sentence score for patients with open-set speech understanding was 76% (range 19%–95%, n = 10 ears). Two ears exhibited Hearing in Noise Test (HINT) sentence scores of 49% and 95%, respectively. Four patients achieved environmental sound awareness without open-set speech recognition. Two had no detectable auditory percepts.

CONCLUSIONS

Most patients who underwent CI following SRS for VS enjoyed access to sound at near-normal levels, with the majority achieving good open-set speech understanding. Implantation can be performed immediately following SRS or in a delayed fashion, depending on hearing status as well as other factors. This strategy may be applied to cases of sporadic or NF2-associated VS.

ABBREVIATIONS AAO-HNS = American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery; ABI = auditory brainstem implant; CI = cochlear implantation; CN = cranial nerve; CNC = consonant-nucleus-consonant; CPA = cerebellopontine angle; EPS = electrical promontory stimulation; ESA = environmental sound awareness; HINT = Hearing in Noise Test; IAC = internal auditory canal; NF2 = neurofibromatosis type 2; OSP = open-set speech perception; PTA = pure tone average; SRS = stereotactic radiosurgery; VS = vestibular schwannoma; WRS = word recognition score.

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Contributor Notes

Correspondence Colin L. W. Driscoll: Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN. driscoll.colin@mayo.edu.

INCLUDE WHEN CITING Published online July 24, 2020; DOI: 10.3171/2020.4.JNS201069.

Disclosures Dr. Carlson is a consultant for Advanced Bionics, Cochlear Corp., and MED-EL GmbH. Dr. Driscoll is a consultant for Advanced Bionics, Cochlear Corp., and Envoy Medical.

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