New Hearing Aid Could Help People With Inner Ear Damage

Researchers have designed an electrode implant that should more effectively counter inner ear damage
Many hearing implants today don’t have the capability of helping people with inner ear damage or auditory nerve problems, but the ones that try which are brainstem implants are not very effective in doing so but there is a far better solution.
This next-gen technology uses body-safe, resilient platinum for electrodes, but overcomes the metal’s usual stiffness thanks to micron-level machining inspired by kirigami paper cutting.
Once wrapped in silicone, it’s highly conductive but can cling tightly to the auditory brainstem and send more targeted signals than in other implants.
Scientists have succeeded in testing the implant on mice, but there’s still a long way to go.
The team just recently created a human-sized version that is suitable for surgery, but it will have to go through more studies and tests before human trials begin.
Provided everything goes as planned, though, it might restore hearing in situations where patients might only recover basic sound perception.
But it doesn’t end there, with this new technology, the possibilities are endless for example it could be used in the brain, spine and anywhere else doctors might want to record or stimulate neural activity.