The ear is the organ of hearing and balance in every human being and is vital for everyday life. It gives you the ability to receive sound and send that information to your brain. The Silverstein Institute was founded by Dr. Herbert Silverstein - ear surgeon, clinical research specialist and Meniere's Disease treatment specialist in 1979 and is where the Silverstein MicroWick™ was created.
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What Is the Silverstein MicroWick™
The MicroWick™ is the technique designed and created by Dr. Silverstein, and used to deliver medication to the inner ear. The wick is simply inserted through a small tube into the eardrum where it then rests on the round window membrane, which is the doorway to the inner ear. This medical method is similar to treating eyes with eye drops and is such a minimal procedure that it is done in the office using local anesthesia. Patients are then given the medication and are able to easily continue self-treatment at home. This painless procedure is generally covered by insurance. The most common drugs used are dexamethasone or gentamicin. The most common diseases treated are Ménière's disease and sudden deafness. The treatment usually lasts from 2-4 weeks after which the MicroWick™ and tube are removed and the eardrum patched. Patients are able to enjoy a quick and uncomplicated recovery as their eardrum heals.
How Can It Help With Inner Ear Diseases
The MicroWick™ has the flexibility to treat a multiplicity of inner ear diseases because it provides easy access for getting medication directly into the inner ear.
This is a disease where the membranous labyrinth of the ear is affected by an unknown cause which increases fluid pressure and causes gradual deafness. Attacks of vertigo, pressure in the ear and Tinnitus also result. Early treatment and delivering the medications directly to the inner ear via the MicroWick™ give the best results. It has been proven that the higher the concentration that is secured, the better the result. This method of relieving Meniere's Disease has been successful in 80% of patients and 90% have had their hearing preserved.
This sensation of losing balance has been relieved in 80% of patients that the MicroWick™ has been used on and has preserved the hearing of most patients.
Ringing in the ears, or Tinnitus, has been reduced in 60% of MicroWick™ patients.
Sudden Deafness and Traumatic Tinnitus
The MicroWick™ has been used to deliver steroids in high concentrations to the inner ear in sudden deafness situations. Again, early treatment provides for the best results. Noise induced hearing loss and tinnitus can also benefit from this treatment.
Creative ideas and innovative technology has brought the human race to a place of great triumph in the medical world. The Silverstein Institute, found in 3 locations in Florida, offers advanced specialty attention. Fifty medically trained and educated specialists staff the four divisions where ENT care is in a league of its own.