Signal Processing Strategies for Cochlear Implants Using Current Steering
© Waldo Nogueira et al. 2009
Received: 29 November 2008
Accepted: 22 September 2009
Published: 12 November 2009
In contemporary cochlear implant systems, the audio signal is decomposed into different frequency bands, each assigned to one electrode. Thus, pitch perception is limited by the number of physical electrodes implanted into the cochlea and by the wide bandwidth assigned to each electrode. The Harmony HiResolution bionic ear (Advanced Bionics LLC, Valencia, CA, USA) has the capability of creating virtual spectral channels through simultaneous delivery of current to pairs of adjacent electrodes. By steering the locus of stimulation to sites between the electrodes, additional pitch percepts can be generated. Two new sound processing strategies based on current steering have been designed, SpecRes and SineEx. In a chronic trial, speech intelligibility, pitch perception, and subjective appreciation of sound were compared between the two current steering strategies and standard HiRes strategy in 9 adult Harmony users. There was considerable variability in benefit, and the mean results show similar performance with all three strategies.
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