I learned on Thursday that people with Cochlear implants are not candidates for the injections. Also it is only for people with acquired sensorineural hearing loss which they estimate is 90% of the population with hearing loss. The ear has to be healthy…no damage to the tympanic membrane. There are a lot of considerations as to how the fluid in the inner ear would interact with the fluid in the injection, whether a person has Menieres, what other drugs a patient is taking etc.
This is probably 5 to 10 years in the future and the clinical trials are for 18 to 65 year olds right now which are a lot of people with this hearing loss. If you have a CI in one ear you could inject the other ear. More considerations as to whether the injection is a one shot deal or a series or is ongoing.
What they basically found was that in the cochlea there are progenitor hair cells right next to the hair cells that receive sounds. In all mammals except humans, these progenitor cells send a signal to the deteriorated hair cells to regenerate. In humans, the progenitor cells act only as support for the other cells. This drug seems successful in generating a signal to wake up the other cells. They are doing double blind trials and have not experienced the placebo effect of some clinical trials in general. You can’t think you hear better if you didn’t get the drug. Your word recognition is tested and people who received the drug had improvement. Not sure how much. I got most of the info from the Q&A session afterwards.
I get eye injections…my eye is numbed lol. I guess they would numb the ear. I would be the first in line for a clinical trial if I could.
What a major breakthrough this is.