Evaluation of the effectiveness and safety in a multi-center clinical trial of VIBRANT SOUNDBRIDGE® in Japan

Katsumi Doi, Sho Kanzaki, Kozo Kumakawa, Shin Ichi Usami, Satoshi Iwasaki, Noboru Yamanaka, Yasushi Naito, Kiyofumi Gyo, Tetsuya Tono, Haruo Takahashi, Yukihiko Kanda

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Abstract

Middle ear implants (MEIs) such as the Vibrant Soundbridge® (VSB) are attractive and alternative treatments for patients with conductive, sensorineural, and mixed hearing loss who do not benefit from, or who choose not to wear, conventional hearing aids (HAs). Recent studies suggest that MEIs can provide better improvements in functional gain, speech perception, and quality of life than HAs, although there are certain risks associated with the surgery which should be taken into consideration, including facial nerve or chorda tympanic nerve damage, dysfunctions of the middle and inner ears, and future device failure/explantation. In Japan, a multi-center clinical trial of VSB was conducted between 2011-2014. A round window vibroplasty via the transmastoid approach was adopted in the protocol. The bony lip overhanging the round window membrane (RWM) was extensively but very carefully drilled to introduce the Floating Mass Transducer (FMT). Perichondrium sheets were used to stabilize the FMT onto the RWM. According to the audiological criteria, the upper limit of bone conduction should be 45 dB, 50 dB, and 65 dB from 500 Hz to 4, 000 Hz. Twenty-five patients underwent the surgery so far at 13 different medical centers. The age at the surgery was between 26-79 years old, and there were 15 males and 10 females. The cause of conductive or mixed hearing loss was middle ear diseases in 23 cases and congenital aural atresia in two cases. The data concerning on the effectiveness and safety of VSB was collected before the surgery and 20 weeks after the surgery. Significant improvements of free-field Pure Tone Audiogram (PTA) from 250 Hz to 8, 000 Hz were confirmed (p<0.001). Hearing gain up to 40 dB was achieved in the 1, 000 Hz to 4, 000 Hz range. No deterioration in either air conduction or bone conduction at PTA was noted at 20 weeks after the surgery. Monosyllable speech perception in both quiet and noisy conditions improved significantly (p<0.001). The speech discrimination score in both quiet and noisy conditions improved significantly too (p<0.001). In the future, it is likely that there will be an increasing population even in Japan that will meet the criteria for MEIs such as VSB. However, the long-term efficacy and safety of these devices should be established.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1449-1458
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Otolaryngology of Japan
Volume118
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • Clinical trial
  • Effectiveness
  • Middle ear implants
  • Safety
  • VSB

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology

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    Doi, K., Kanzaki, S., Kumakawa, K., Usami, S. I., Iwasaki, S., Yamanaka, N., Naito, Y., Gyo, K., Tono, T., Takahashi, H., & Kanda, Y. (2015). Evaluation of the effectiveness and safety in a multi-center clinical trial of VIBRANT SOUNDBRIDGE® in Japan. Journal of Otolaryngology of Japan, 118(12), 1449-1458. https://doi.org/10.3950/jibiinkoka.118.1449