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R. Sterling Hodgson, M.D.
1849 NW Kearney Street, Suite 200
Portland, OR 97209-1453

Office: 503.553.3664
Fax: 503.553.3668

Implantable Hearing Technologies

Our office is pleased to offer several types of surgically implantable hearing technologies, including cochlear implants for severe to profound hearing losses and Baha® systems for conductive hearing losses or single-sided deafness.

Cochlear Implants

Cochlear implant technology has advanced significantly over the past several years and the Food & Drug Administration has relaxed the candidacy criteria for both children and adults. When severe or profound bilateral hearing losses are no longer treatable with traditional hearing aids, cochlear implants can be an important option for the right type of patient. There is a battery of tests we must perform to determine if a patient is an implant candidate. A tiny array of electrodes is surgically placed within the cochlea and provides stimulation to the neural fibers that transmit hearing impulses. An external "speech processor" that resembles a behind the ear hearing aid is worn in conjunction with the internal components. While cochlear implants are not a "quick fix" treatment for hearing loss and require a sincere commitment to frequent audiologic follow-up, they have become one of the most rewarding procedures we perform. It is an outpatient procedure and recovery time is very brief, usually 5-10 days. For more information about cochlear implants please visit our audiology services page. We also invite you to visit the link for our supplier, Cochlear Americas.

Baha® Systems

Baha® systems are for an entirely different type of patient. There are several specific conditions that could warrant the placement of a Baha®:
1.  Patients who have a conductive or mixed hearing loss that has not been remedied by other surgeries
2.  A chronically draining ear that, despite medical intervention, cannot tolerate a traditional hearing aid
3.  Patients who have no ear canal (atresia) or small, malformed outer ears (microtia)
4.  Normal hearing in one ear with a permanent, profound hearing loss in the other (also called single-sided deafness or SSD).

A Baha® system requires surgical placement of a titanium screw fixture in the mastoid bone behind the ear and under the skin while a small abutment protrudes outward allowing the attachment of a sound processor. For patients with medical conditions that prohibit the fitting of conventional hearing aids, this sound processor serves as a way to direct sound toward the inner ear using the efficiency of bone conduction while bypassing the outer and middle ear. Patients with single-sided deafness receive a Baha® on the "deaf" side so the sound processor can route the auditory signals coming from the "deaf" side across the skull via bone conduction to the better hearing ear. Baha® placement is an outpatient procedure and recovery time for both children and adults is approximately 5-7 days, however there is a 4 to 6 week post-op waiting period before the sound processor can be activated. For additional information about Baha® systems, please visit our audiology services page or the home page for our Baha® supplier, Cochlear Americas.

Middle Ear Implants

Middle ear implants are an emerging field in hearing loss management. These are devices that can be attached to the hearing bones behind the ear drum to augment the movements with mechanical energy, rather than simply sound. This allows for greater volume of sound than traditional hearing aids. Middle ear implants are suited for patients who have moderate to severe sensorineural hearing loss, with normal anatomy and no history of prior ear surgery. Most commonly this would be a patient who is not doing well with hearing aids but also is not severe enough for a cochlear implant. The only fully implantable middle ear implant currently approved by the FDA and available on the market is known as The Esteem from Envoy Medical. Dr. Hodgson is one of only a handful of surgeons nationwide to have been fully trained and certified on this procedure. For additional information about Middle Ear Implants, please contact Envoy Medical at


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R. Sterling Hodgson, MD | | 503.553.3664
1849 NW Kearney St., Suite 200, Portland, OR 97209


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R. Sterling Hodgson, MD, 1849 NW Kearney St., Suite 200, Portland, OR 97209 | 503.553.3664 | | 5/13/2021 | Page Keywords: doctor Portland OR | doctor Portland OR |