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In trecut, pierderea senzorineural a auzului era denumit surzirea nervului.

Acum tim c n majoritatea cazurilor, problema este generat de urechea intern i


nu de nervul auditiv. Totui, continum s grupm cele dou probleme, deoarece
urechea intern i nervul auditiv sunt conectate i trebuie s funcioneze mpreun.
In general problema principala este deteriorarea acelor mici firisoare de par care
convertesc energia mecanica in energie electrica.

Cauzele pierderii senzorineurale a auzului sunt variate ns, n general, pot fi


mprite n dou categorii: congenitale i dobndite.

Pierderea congenital a auzului este prezent la natere i este cea mai


comun problem la nou-nscui. Poate fi motenit sau cauzat de
dezvoltarea anormal n stadiile fetale ale vieii. nainte de dezvoltarea
vaccinului, rubeola matern sau Pojarul german era cauza comun a pierderii
congenitale a auzului.
Pierderea dobndit a auzului, care se petrece dup natere, poate fi cauzat
de o gam larg de factori. Acetia includ traume, naintrea n vrst),
expunerea la zgomotele provocate de aparate sau arme de foc, sindromul
Meniere i meningit.

Pierderea auzului cauzata de afectarea transmiterii sunetelor (surditatea


de transmisie): suntele nu ajung la nivelul urechii interne; aceasta situatie apare
in cazul dopurilor de ceara sau a unei excrescente care blocheaza transmiterea
sunetelor, ca de exemplu in otoscleroza;

Tratament

Cand ambele urechi sunt afectate sunt commune protezele auditive


In cazul unui nivel mai profund al pierderii auzului, uneori protezele auditive nu
ajut suficient. Acest lucru este din cauz c pierderea senzorineural a auzului
determin distorsionarea sunetelor. Amplificarea sunetelor prin intermediul
protezelor auditive le face s fie mai puternice, dar nu neaprat mai clare. Chiar i
protezele auditive de bun calitate pot suna distorsionat dac urechea intern este
grav afectat.

n cazul de pierdere sever pn la profund a auzului cand aparatele auditive nu


mai dau rezultate, ar trebui s aflai mai multe despre implanturile cohleare.
Implantul cohlear este un dispozitiv electronic implantat chirurgical - astfel, ocolete
partea afectat a urechii pentru a stimula direct nervul auditiv. Spre deosebire de
protezele auditive care doar amplific sunetul, implanturile cohleare transform
undele sonore n impulsuri electrice ntr-un mod care simuleaz auzul
*filmulet*

O singur ureche
n cazul n care suferii de pierdere senzorineural a auzului uoar pn la sever
ntr-o singur ureche, atunci cea mai comun metod de tratament este proteza
auditiv. Totui, ntruct protezele auditive necesit ca auzul s fie funcional ntr-un
anumit grad, acestea nu ajut n cazul pierderii profunde a auzului.
n cazul pierderii profunde, implanturile cu conducie osoas Baha pot transmite
sunetul prin os, de la urechea afectat, n partea cealalt ctre urechea funcional.
Acest lucru faciliteaz nelegerea vorbirii n situaiile zgomotoase i reduce
atenuarea sunetelor din partea surzit.

A Possibility for Restoring


Hearing Loss
When it comes to some kinds of hearing loss, there's no shortage of potentially helpful devices ranging from hearing aids to
cochlear implants.

However, one area of hearing research is directed at curing age-related hearing loss and other kinds of deafness. That research
engine was kick-started about 15 years ago by Dr. Edwin Rubel, professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery and of
physiology and biophysics at the UW's Virginia Merrill Bloedel Hearing Research Center.

In the hope of helping people who have nerve deafness, Dr. Edwin Rubel studies
chicks' ability to re-grow their hearing nerve cells.

Rubel studies the regenerative properties of hair cells, which


aren't hairs at all. They're actually small cells with protein-filled
protrusions. These cells line one part of the cochlea, a snail-
shaped structure in the inner ear. The protrusions, which bunch
together like microscopic tufts of grass, are mechanical
receptors that vibrate when struck by sound waves. The hair
cells turn those vibrations into electrical nerve impulses, which
travel through ganglion cell bodies and into the cochlear nerve,
where those impulses are sent into the brain and processed as
sound.

Many kinds of hearing loss, including those that are age-


related, congenital, or environmental (such as repeated
exposure to a loud noise or ear trauma), are actually due to
loss of hair cells, and that loss was believed to be permanent.

More than a decade ago, Rubel's team made a remarkable discovery: hair cells actually regenerated on their own in the ears of
birds.

"That was a great surprise to us, obviously," Rubel said. "We thought that once the hair cells were damaged, they lost them for
life, and that they'd have hearing loss that would last for life."

The discovery, which was made simultaneously with another group outside the UW, helped make hair cell regeneration a sudden
gathering point for hearing loss research.

Although a few devices exist to bring sound to those with hearing loss, hair cell studies are attempting to cure deafness.
Treatments such as cochlear implants, which artificially translate sounds into electrical impulses and send them to the brain, try to
bypass the lost hair cells.

"That's been a wonderful treatment for people with profound hearing loss," Rubel said. "But if you really want to cure hearing loss,
hair cell research is the only game in town."

After years of extensive research on hair cells in a variety of organisms, scientists have determined that hair cells naturally
regenerate in nearly all vertebrate animals, except mammals, such as humans. Rubel and others are trying to transfer their
knowledge of hair cells and the means through which the cells regenerate, in an attempt to bring about a similar process in
humans.

"We're trying to better understand how the bird does it, and we'd like to know how we can use information from birds to trick
mammals into doing the same thing," Rubel explained.

Beyond seeking findings that can be applied to ameliorating hearing loss, though, Rubel is interested in the biology of the central
nervous system. He examines development of the brain, pathways of the auditory system, and how experience influences both
behavior and the development of the brain's hearing centers.

One of Rubel's experiments looked at hearing loss in a Bengalese finch, which learns only one song in its lifetime. When it lost its