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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The potential risk of carotid injury in cochlear implant surgery.

BACKGROUND: The advent of cochlear implantation has revolutionized the options afforded to the deaf population. With the increase in the prevalence of this procedure have come larger experiences in the associated technical challenges and complications. RESULTS: We present the evaluation and management of a patient with an unusual complication of improper placement of the implant electrode into the carotid canal and its management. We discuss the anatomy of the carotid artery and its proximity to the cochlea to emphasize the potential risk to this large vessel. CONCLUSIONS: Damage to the carotid canal and the carotid artery is a potential risk of cochlear implant surgery. When available, we recommend intraoperative electrical testing of the cochlear implant be performed. If there is doubt as to the placement of the electrode, a radiograph should be obtained before the patient is taken out of the operating room to avoid this complication.[1]


  1. The potential risk of carotid injury in cochlear implant surgery. Gastman, B.R., Hirsch, B.E., Sando, I., Fukui, M.B., Wargo, M.L. Laryngoscope (2002) [Pubmed]
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