In this study simultaneous paired stimulation of electrodes in cochlear implants is investigated by psychophysical experiments in 8 post-lingually deaf subjects (and one extra subject who only participated in part of the experiments). Simultaneous and sequential monopolar stimulation modes are used as references and are compared to channel interaction compensation, partial tripolar stimulation and a novel sequential stimulation strategy named phased array compensation. Psychophysical experiments are performed to investigate both the loudness integration during paired stimulation at the main electrodes as well as the interaction with the electrode contact located halfway between the stimulating pair. The study shows that simultaneous monopolar stimulation has more loudness integration on the main electrodes and more interaction in between the electrodes than sequential stimulation. Channel interaction compensation works to reduce the loudness integration at the main electrodes, but does not reduce the interaction in between the electrodes caused by paired stimulation. Partial tripolar stimulation uses much more current to reach the needed loudness, but shows the same interaction in between the electrodes as sequential monopolar stimulation. In phased array compensation we have used the individual impedance matrix of each subject to calculate the current needed on each electrode to exactly match the stimulation voltage along the array to that of sequential stimulation. The results show that the interaction in between the electrodes is the same as monopolar stimulation. The strategy uses less current than partial tripolar stimulation, but more than monopolar stimulation. In conclusion, the paper shows that paired stimulation is possible if the interaction is compensated.
Vellinga, D., Bruijn, S., Briaire, J. J., Kalkman, R. K., & Frijns, J. H. M. (2017). Reducing interaction In simultaneous paired stimulation with CI. PLoS ONE, 12(2). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0171071