Cerumen impaction shown by brain magnetic resonance imaging in patients with cognitive impairment

Tsutomu Nakashima, Saiko Sugiura, Shinji Naganawa, Minori Yasue, Yoshitaka Inui, Takashi Sakurai, Yasue Uchida, Michihiko Sone, Masaaki Teranishi, Tadao Yoshida, Kengo Ito, Kenji Toba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aim: Hearing loss is a risk factor for the progression of dementia. Cognitive improvement is occasionally found after removal of cerumen impaction. Because patients with dementia do not usually complain about cerumen impaction, detection methods are important. The present study aimed to investigate whether cerumen impaction is observable using brain magnetic resonance imaging. Methods: Participants were six patients whose hearing level improved 15dB or more unilaterally or bilaterally after the removal of cerumen impaction. A radiologist who was blind to the impaction side and whether magnetic resonance imaging scans were taken before or after impaction removal classified cerumen impaction as positive, negative or unclear. Results: Three ears classified as impaction positive and five ears classified as impaction negative corresponded accurately to the presence or absence of cerumen impaction. Among four ears classified as unclear, two did and two did not have cerumen impaction. Conclusion: Careful examination of the external ear canal on brain magnetic resonance imaging can be used to detect cerumen impaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)392-395
Number of pages4
JournalGeriatrics and Gerontology International
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 01-03-2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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