Research on electrophysiological assessment of hearing in patients with acoustic neuromas

Manuel Don, Ph.D., is a principal investigator in the Division of Communication and Auditory Neuroscience at the House Ear Institute. Dr. Don joined the House Ear Institute in 1976 after working as an assistant research auditory physiologist at the University of California, Irvine. At the Institute, Dr. Don's research is focused primarily on the electrophysiological assessment of hearing through evoked responses and neural activity of the auditory nerve for patients with hearing loss or acoustic neuromas (benign tumors growing on the balance nerve that can affect the auditory nerve and hearing).

He and his research team refined and modified the standard Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) test that was previously used to screen for medium and large tumors, but detected only 30-50% of small tumors. HEI patented Dr. Don's algorithm for an improved ABR test, the Stacked ABR, which detects 95% of small tumors, and is now used for clinical application. Dr. Don has also patented a technique for assessing patients with Meniere's disease.

Dr. Don has received grants and awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH and was a member and chairman of the NIH Sensory Disorders and Language Study Section. He has served as an editorial consultant for several peer-reviewed journals including Annals of Otology, Rhinology, and Laryngology, Journal of Acoustical Society of America, Hearing Research, and Ear and Hearing. Dr. Don has authored and co-authored numerous articles for journals in his field of expertise including the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Audiology and Neurotology, Otology & Neurotology, NeuroReport, and American Journal of Otology. He is a member of several professional organizations and is a guest lecturer and keynote speaker at academic and scientific conferences.

On June 8, 2009, Dr. Don delivered the prestigious Hallowell Davis Memorial Lecture at the 21st Biennial Symposium of the International Electric Response Study Group in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Dr. Don was invited to make this presentation in response to his many years of distinguished work in the area of human electrophysiology.

He received his bachelor's degree in speech from University of California, Berkeley, and his master's in speech & hearing sciences from the University of Arizona. He received his doctorate in hearing sciences from Stanford University, where he also completed a postdoctoral fellowship.

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