The new Stanford Ear Institute (SEI), which opened this summer, integrates adult and pediatric hearing and balance specialties under one roof in a new off campus location. Sharing a building with the Byers Eye Institute at Stanford, the Stanford Ear Institute brings all the physicians, audiologists, hearing device and rehabilitation specialists who have been widely dispersed all over campus into one dedicated place.
"The SEI is a joint effort on the part of the adult and children's hospitals to bring together all hearing and balance health care into a single setting," says Robert Jackler, MD, the Edward C. and Amy H. Sewall Professor and Chair of Otorhinolaryngology. "The idea is to create a smoothly integrated pathway for patients to receive all services in one location."
Care for routine to complex issues
The Stanford Ear Institute will manage the full spectrum of medical and surgical disorders of the ear and its related structures — from ear infections and tinnitus to vertigo/balance problems and profound hearing loss.
Stanford has a very strong track record caring for complex issues such as tumors of the ear and the hearing part of the brain, treating facial nerve disorders and providing implantable auditory devices such as cochlear implants for people who are totally deaf. But the department is looking to provide a more population-based approach at its new center.
"We want to take care of grandparents with hearing loss and babies with ear infections," says Jackler. "And we want to continue to provide specialty services for people in our surrounding community with very complicated problems." The new setting includes six exam rooms and six audiology booths dedicated to adult patients, and an additional set of six exam rooms and six audiology booths for children. "The convenience for patients will be greatly improved," says Jackler, who is also chair of the department of otolaryngology-head & neck surgery, and a professor, by courtesy, of neurosurgery and surgery. "It's a soup to nuts integrated center."
The site will also include a multidisciplinary balance program that offers sophisticated balance testing, along with physical therapy and rehabilitation; and a cochlear implant center for evaluation, device placement and training for patients with profound hearing loss.
The new center also provides more space to take on long-term clinical research to better understand highly prevalent diseases such as age and noise-related hearing loss, childhood ear infections, congenital deafness and the deterioration of balance that comes with aging.
"We have world-class research in overcoming hearing loss and deafness through regenerative means," says Jackler. "The importance of building an integrative setting for clinical trials is that there will be a time when the discoveries coming out of our laboratories will be put into place and implemented in humans within our new environment at the Stanford Ear Institute."
To refer a patient
Call the Stanford referral line at 866-742-4811 or fax 650-320-9443.