The effect of methodological differences in the measurement of stapes motion in live and cadaver ears

Wade Chien, Michael E. Ravicz, Saumil N. Merchant, John J. Rosowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Methodological differences in sound-induced stapes velocity (Vs) measurements in live and cadaveric ears were examined using fresh cadaveric temporal bones. On average, differences in preparation (sectioning the stapedius tendon, removing the facial nerve, and widely opening the facial recess) had statistically insignificant effects on measured Vs. Differences in the achievable measurement angle (with respect to the axis of piston-like stapes motion) had a significant effect on measured Vs below 2 kHz. These results suggest that much if not all of the differences in Vs measurements between live and cadaveric ears can be explained by the differences in measurement angle between the two preparations. Measurement angle was found to have minimal effect on measured Vs above 2 kHz. This demonstrates that the commonly used method of estimating stapes translational velocity by dividing the measured velocity by the cosine of the measurement angle is not valid above 2 kHz.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-197
Number of pages15
JournalAudiology and Neurotology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1 2006
Externally publishedYes



  • Human middle ear
  • Middle-ear function in live ears
  • Stapes velocity
  • Temporal bone studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Speech and Hearing

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