Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy

, Volume 40, Issue 6, pp 705–711 | Cite as

Preoperative evaluation of cochlear implantation through the round window membrane in the facial recess using high-resolution computed tomography

  • Xie Li-Hong 
  • Tang Jie 
  • Miao Wen-Jie 
  • Tang Xiang-Long 
  • Li Heng 
  • Tang An-Zhou 
Original Article



We evaluated the risk of cochlear implantation through the round window membrane in the facial recess through a preoperative analysis of the angle between the facial nerve-round window and the cranial midline using high-resolution temporal bone CT.


Temporal bone CT films of 176 patients with profound sensorineural hearing loss at our hospital from 2013 to 2015 were reviewed. The preoperative temporal bone CT scans of the patients were retrospectively analysed. The vertical distance (d value) from the leading edge of the facial nerve to the posterior wall of the external auditory canal and the angle (α value) between the line from the leading edge of the facial nerve to the midpoint of the round window membrane and the median sagittal line on the round window membrane plane were measured. Based on intraoperative observation, the round window membrane was divided into complete round window membrane exposure (group A), partial exposure (group B), and unexposed (group C) groups, and statistical analysis was performed.


The α value could be effectively measured for all 176 patients (62.60 ± 7.12), and the d value could be effectively measured for 95 cases (5.53 ± 1.00). An analysis of the correlation between the α and d values of these 95 cases found a negative correlation. Of the 176 cases, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed that the differences among the groups were significant [P = 0.000 (< 0.05)].


The angle (α value) between the line connecting the leading edge of the facial nerve to the midpoint of the round window and the median sagittal line measured in preoperative CT scans was associated with the difficulty of intraoperatively exposing the round window membrane. When the α value was larger than a certain degree, the difficulty of exposing the round window membrane was increased. In such cases, the surgeon should fully expose the round window membrane during surgery, which could result decrease the likelihood of complications.


Temporal bone high-resolution computed tomography Cochlear implantation Round window membrane Facial nerve 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xie Li-Hong 
    • 1
  • Tang Jie 
    • 1
  • Miao Wen-Jie 
    • 1
  • Tang Xiang-Long 
    • 1
  • Li Heng 
    • 1
  • Tang An-Zhou 
    • 1
  1. 1.Otorhinolaryngology Head and Neck SurgeryThe First Affiliated Hospital of Guangxi Medical UniversityNanningChina

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