Medical Specialties

At the Center for Neurosciences, we work together across specialties to provide the best, most comprehensive approach to treatment.

Superior Semicircular Canal Dehiscence Syndrome

The inner ear contains three semicircular canals, which are responsible for sensing angular acceleration of the head and sending that balance information on to the brain. When the temporal bone is thinner than normal at the dome of the superior semicircular canal, an opening or dehiscence results – causing Superior Semicircular Canal Dehiscence Syndrome (SSCD). Symptoms of SSCD include: Tullio phenomenon (experiencing vertigo after being exposed to a loud sound), low frequency conductive hearing loss in the presence of a supra-normal bone line by audiogram, heightened sensitivity to body sounds (pulsatile tinnitus, hearing oneself chew, hearing one’s eyes move), autophony (where your own voice appears very loud in the affected ear), heightened sensitivity to sources of vibration in the environment, dizziness associated with the Valsalva maneuver (bearing down) and a sense of fullness in the affected ear.

SSCD is diagnosed using a temporal bone CT scan as well as comprehensive audiometric and vestibular testing, including vestibular evoked myogenic potentials (VEMPs). If symptoms persist and become unbearable, surgery to repair the dehiscent semicircular canal (transmastoid or middle cranial fossa approaches) is an option.

Why Choose Us

  • Dr. Abraham Jacob, Medical Director for Ear & Hearing (E&H) at the Center for Neurosciences (CNS), is fellowship trained in Otology, Neurotology, and Cranial Base Surgery. He is the first and most experienced Neurotologist in Tucson.
  • Dr. Jacob was a founding member of the University of Arizona (UA) Department of Otolaryngology prior to his departure and transition to CNS. At UA, he was Vice Chair of ENT and held the rank of full Professor with Tenure. He has an international reputation as an expert for treating ear diseases.
  • Dr. Jacob transitioned his practice to the Center for Neurosciences in early 2017 as he felt that the new environment helped him to optimize delivery of personalized ear and lateral skull base care for his patients.
  • Dr. Jacob and E&H @ CNS offers state-of-the-art medical and surgical care for patients with all types of ear and lateral skull base disorders. Comprehensive audiometric/vestibular testing is available including comprehensive audiometry, videonystagmography (VNG), and VEMP testing. Neuroradiology services are offered through the Center for Neurosciences. As the most experienced Otologist/Neurotologist in Southern Arizona, Dr. Jacob is experienced with and uniquely qualified to perform transmastoid or middle cranial fossa plugging of the superior semicircular canal.