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To assess whether pre-operative assessment with a bone conduction hearing device on a softband is an accurate predictor of performance with one of two transcutaneous hearing implants.
Cohort study comparing pre-and post-operative speech audiometry using correlation analysis.
Pre-operative pure tone audiometry and aided half optimum speech recognition thresholds were compared with post-operative aided results for each ear that had undergone implantation. Data were collected prospectively.
Full data were available in 24 ears. In 19 out of 24 ears (79 per cent), the difference between pre- and post-operative speech scores was less than 10 dB, demonstrating a good clinical correlation. The Pearson correlation coefficient was calculated at 0.66 (95 per cent confidence interval = 0.357–0.842), indicating a strong statistical correlation.
Pre-operative softband testing shows good clinical correlation and strong statistical correlation with hearing implant performance. The findings suggest there is value in using the test to predict performance and guide patients’ expectations.
To compare the skin-related complications of the traditional skin flap method with a linear incision method of implantation.
All cases of bone-anchored hearing aid surgery performed by a single surgeon (n = 117) were compared over two periods: 1999–2011, when the traditional method of skin flap and soft tissue removal was used (group 1; n = 86), and 2012–2013, when linear incision without soft tissue removal was used (group 2; n = 31). All patients were followed up for one year and complications were recorded for that period.
There were 21 (24.4 per cent) skin-related complications in group 1 (skin overgrowth = 12, wound infection = 8 and numbness = 1) and 3 (9.7 per cent) complications in group 2 (wound infection = 3). Analysis using independent t-tests showed the results to be significant (p < 0.05; 95 per cent confidence interval = 0.0800–0.4473).
The linear incision without soft tissue removal method for bone-anchored hearing aid implantation reduces skin complication rates.
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