Facial Nerve Stimulation Patterns Associated With Cochlear Implantation in Labyrinthitis Ossificans

Otol Neurotol. 2018 Dec;39(10):e992-e995. doi: 10.1097/MAO.0000000000002028.


Objective: To describe and characterize facial nerve stimulation (FNS) patterns in patients with labyrinthitis ossificans who underwent cochlear implantation (CI) for sensorineural hearing loss.

Patients: Five ears in four patients with labyrinthitis ossificans who underwent CI and subsequently developed FNS.

Interventions: CI, electrode mapping, and/or explantation to resolve FNS.

Main outcome measures: FNS, postoperative computed tomography imaging, and resolution of FNS.

Results: Fourteen ears with labyrinthitis ossificans underwent CI over an 11-year period at a single institution; 5 of these ears exhibited postoperative FNS (35.7% incidence). Four cases had involvement of basal electrodes, while all five cases had middle and/or apical electrode stimulation. All cases had resolution of FNS with CI reprogramming, however, the resultant map in two cases provided minimal audiologic benefit and patients became nonusers in that ear.

Conclusions: FNS arising from all cochlear regions is possible in patients with labyrinthitis ossificans who undergo CI. Mapping and electrode deactivation can resolve symptoms, but resultant audiologic benefit is variable and may lead to explantation.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cochlear Implantation / adverse effects*
  • Facial Nerve*
  • Female
  • Hearing Loss, Sensorineural / surgery
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Labyrinthitis / surgery*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology*
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology