Closed tympanoplasty in cholesteatoma surgery: long-term (10 years) hearing results using cartilage ossiculoplasty

N Quaranta, S Fernandez-Vega Feijoo, F Piazza, C Zini
European Archives of Oto-rhino-laryngology 2001, 258 (1): 20-4
The aim of this retrospective study was to evaluate the long-term hearing results of using costal cartilage prostheses in ossicular chain reconstruction procedures in subjects operated on for a middle ear cholesteatoma with an intact canal wall tympanoplasty. Thirty-six patients (four with bilateral disease) followed up for 10 years who underwent an ossiculoplasty with a cartilage prostheses between January 1987 and December 1989 constituted the population studied. All the subjects underwent a staged intact canal wall tympanoplasty with mastoidectomy. Ossiculoplasty with total or partial chondroprosthesis was performed during the second stage. The long-term outcome was evaluated in terms of hearing according to the guidelines of the Committee on Hearing and Equilibrium (1995), and in terms of complications (anatomical and functional). In 18 patients a partial cartilage ossicular replacement prosthesis (PORP) was used, while in 22 a total cartilage ossicular replacement prosthesis (TORP) was used. In the PORP group the mean preoperative air-bone gap (ABG) was 22.4 dB hearing level (HL); before the second stage the ABG was 37.9 dB HL, at 2 years it was 12.1 dB HL, at 5 years 15.3 dB HL and at 10 years 15.8 dB HL. In the TORP group the mean preoperative ABG was 31.6 dB HL; before the second stage the ABG was 41.1 dB HL, at 2 years it was 14.4 dB HL, at 5 years 17 dB HL and at 10 years 18.5 dB HL. In both groups the number of cases with a postoperative ABG of < 20 dB HL remained stable (P > 0.05) over time. The failure rate was 17.5%, but only in 5% of cases was a functional revision needed. No cases of extrusion of the prostheses were encountered. The use of a chondroprosthesis is associated with functional results similar to those obtained by other authors. The efficacy of the prostheses remains stable over time and is associated with a very low rate of complications and failures. In this series no extrusion occurred and in no case did an infectious disease develop after cartilage transplantation.

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