Central deafness associated with a midbrain lesion

Frank E. Musiek, Lori Charette, Diantha Morse, Jane A. Baran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Central deafness has been linked historically to bihemispheric involvement of the temporal lobe, with more recent findings suggesting that compromise of other cortical and subcortical structures can also result in this disorder. The present investigation extends our understanding of the potential anatomical correlates to central deafness by demonstrating that bilateral involvement of an auditory structure within the midbrain can additionally result in this condition. Our subject was a 21-year-old male with a subarachnoid bleed affecting both inferior colliculi. Significant auditory deficits were noted for the middle and late auditory evoked potentials, while electrophysiologic measures of the periphery indicated normal function. The patient was enrolled in a rehabilitation program for approximately 14 weeks. Although initially unresponsive to sounds, the patient regained most of his auditory abilities during the 10 months he was followed. This case documents the range of auditory deficits that may be associated with damage to the inferior colliculi, and it profiles a hierarchical recovery of auditory function consistent with test findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-151
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Audiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Auditory evoked potentials
  • Auditory processing disorder
  • Central auditory disorders
  • Central deafness
  • Inferior colliculus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing


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