Patents Assigned to MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
  • Patent number: 11426581
    Abstract: A bilateral hearing implant system has a left side and a right side. Left and right side filter bank pre-processors preprocess left and right microphone signals to generate band pass signals for each side. A bilateral signal processing arrangement processes the band pass signals in a time sequence of stimulation frames. The signal processing module includes a bilateral channel selection module synchronously selects for each stimulation frame a set of stimulation channels for each side based on spectral content of the band pass signals. Left and right side signal processing submodules process for each stimulation frame a limited subset of each side band pass signals corresponding to the selected stimulation channels to generate electrical stimulation signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Dirk Meister, Peter Schleich
  • Patent number: 11426593
    Abstract: An implantable medical device includes an implantable coil case that contains a communications coil. A magnet receptacle is located within the coil case at the radial center and has a magnet opening in one of the lateral surface or the medial surface of the coil case. A magnet fitting groove is recessed into one of the lateral or medial surface of the coil case and extends from the magnet opening to the outer circumference of the coil case. A u-shaped implant magnet clip has parallel clip legs that are connected at a closed end of the u-shape, and an implant magnet is attached to one of the clip legs. The coil case and the magnet clip are configured to cooperate for a portion of the coil case to fit between the clip legs and the implant magnet to slide through the magnet fitting groove and fit through the magnet opening into the magnet receptacle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Anandhan Dhanasingh, Claude Jolly, Martin Zimmerling
  • Patent number: 11425514
    Abstract: A middle ear implant system includes a bone conduction transducer configured for fixed attachment to skull bone of a patient beneath the skin behind the ear, and for generating sound vibrations from an external communications signal received through the skin for coupling to the skull bone for bone conduction sound perception by the patient. A malleable ossicle connector is connected to the bone conduction transducer and a middle ear hearing structure of the patient. And one or more isolation springs are configured for placement at the fixed attachment of the bone conduction transducer to the skull bone to acoustically decouple the bone conduction transducer from the skull bone to avoid bone conduction sound perception so that sound perception from the external communications signal is solely via the middle ear sound perception from vibrations coupled to the middle ear hearing structure by the ossicle connector.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 23, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Peter Grasso
  • Patent number: 11399770
    Abstract: A respiration sensor is described of a respiration implant system for an implanted patient with impaired breathing. A sensor body is made of electrically insulating material and is configured to fit between two adjacent ribs and between the pectoralis muscle and the parasternal muscle of the implanted patient, with the bottom surface adjacent to an superficial surface of the parasternal muscle and the top surface adjacent to a profound surface of the pectoralis muscle. At least one parasternal sensor electrode is located on the bottom surface of the sensor body and is configured to cooperate with the electrically insulating material of the sensor body to sense a parasternal electromyography (EMG) signal representing electrical activity of the adjacent parasternal muscle with minimal influence by electrical activity of the nearby pectoralis muscle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Christian Denk
  • Patent number: 11393485
    Abstract: A method of enhancing distorted signal having a speech and noise component, with a processing device having memory with stored training information T, comprising a step of removing noise in spectrum domain according to a noise and speech model to obtain a clear signal spectrum, wherein the training information T comprises dictionaries of compact spectra prototypes of speech and noise, speech gains and noise gains forming together composite states and it comprises probabilities of state history. Dictionaries of compact spectra prototypes comprise compact spectra prototypes of a first dimension P1 and of a second dimension P2 where second dimension P2 is higher or equal to the first dimension P1.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 19, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL ELEKTROMEDIZINISCHE GERÄTE GMBH
    Inventor: Marcin Kuropatwinski
  • Patent number: 11369283
    Abstract: A method is described for estimating skin thickness over an implanted magnet. A plane is defined that is perpendicular to the skin of a patient over an implanted magnet and characterized by x- and y-axis coordinates. The magnetic field strength of the implanted magnet is measured using an array of magnetic sensors on the skin of the patient. From the measured magnetic field strength, at least one x-axis coordinate in the plane is determined for at least one y-axis zero position on the array where a y-axis component of the measured magnetic field strength is zero. From that, a y-axis coordinate of the at least one y-axis zero is calculated as a function of the at least one x-axis coordinate, such that the y-axis coordinate represents thickness of the skin over the implanted magnet.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Christoph Hornsteiner
  • Patent number: 11351373
    Abstract: Arrangements are described for generating electrode stimulation signals to electrode contacts in an implanted cochlear implant electrode array. Electrode stimulation signals are a sequence of monophasic stimulation pulses varying in polarity between positive polarity and negative polarity with successive pulses separated in time by an interpulse interval sufficient for neural response. Accumulated charge imbalance and charge imbalance polarity are calculated for each electrode contact after each stimulation pulse. For each electrode contact a stimulation pulse has the same polarity as an immediately preceding stimulation pulse for that electrode contact only when the charge imbalance polarity has opposite polarity from the immediately preceding stimulation pulse for that electrode contact, and the accumulated charge imbalance exceeds a defined charge imbalance threshold value. Otherwise, each stimulation pulse has the opposite polarity as the immediately preceding stimulation pulse for that electrode contact.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 7, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Ernst Kabot
  • Patent number: 11322168
    Abstract: A dual microphone signal processing arrangement for reducing reverberation is described. Time domain microphone signals are developed from a pair of sensing microphones. These are converted to the time-frequency domain to produce complex value spectra signals. A binary gain function applies frequency-specific energy ratios between the spectra signals to produce transformed spectra signals. A sigmoid gain function based on an inter-microphone coherence value between the transformed spectra signals is applied to the transformed spectra signals to produce coherence adapted spectra signals. And an inverse time-frequency transformation is applied to the coherence adjusted spectra signals to produce time-domain reverberation-compensated microphone signals with reduced reverberation components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 9, 2019
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Kostas Kokkinakis, Joshua Stohl
  • Patent number: 11278729
    Abstract: A portion of a vestibular prosthesis system is described which includes an external coil housing and an external holding magnet that allow rotation of the external coil housing around a rotation axis that passes through the external holding magnet orthogonal to a skin interface surface. An external communications coil arrangement within the housing includes three or more external coil segments rotationally adjacent to each other around the rotation axis, each external coil segment being independently operable by an external signal processor for coupling an implant communication signal. And the external signal processor is configured to periodically operate the external coil segments to quantify rotation of the external coil housing and adjust the signal component of the implant communication signal to offset quantified rotation of the housing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 22, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Martin Unterweissacher, Aitor Morillo, Stefan Strasser, Angelo De Marzo
  • Patent number: 11235149
    Abstract: Optogenetic signal processing is described for an auditory prosthesis with an intracochlear array of optical stimulation sources implanted in a patient having auditory neurons genetically modified with light sensitive ion channels. Stimulation timing signals are generated for the corresponding auditory neurons for each band pass signal based on characteristic temporal fine structure features of the band pass signals. The stimulation timing signals include: i. one or more channel opening signals adapted to open the ion channels of the corresponding auditory neurons, and ii. one or more channel closing signals adapted to close the ion channels of the corresponding ion channels. Optical stimulation signals are then produced for the optical stimulation sources based on the stimulation timing signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 13, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 1, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Dirk Meister, Darshan Shah
  • Patent number: 11229388
    Abstract: A system and method detect neuronal action potential signals from tissue responding to electrical stimulation signals. A sparse signal space model for a set of tissue response recordings has a signal space separable into a plurality of disjoint component manifolds including a neural action potential (NAP) component manifold corresponding to tissue response to electrical stimulation signals. A response measurement module is configured to: i. map a tissue response measurement signal into the sparse signal model space to obtain a corresponding sparse signal representation, ii. project the sparse signal representation onto the NAP component manifold to obtain a sparse NAP component representation, iii. when the sparse NAP component representation is greater than a minimum threshold value, report and recover a detected NAP signal in the tissue response measurement signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 2019
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2022
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Stefan Strahl, Konrad Eugen Schwarz, Philipp Spitzer
  • Patent number: 11212625
    Abstract: A noise cancelling system is described for a in a patient implantable hearing implant system. An implantable microphone senses a sound signal present at the microphone that includes a sound source component from a sound source external to the patient, and a noise component from internal bone conduction. At least one implantable noise sensing element is located near the microphone to sense the noise component. A filter is controlled by an adaptive algorithm responsive to transform the noise component and outputs a transducer control signal. A bone conduction transducer receives the transducer control signal and generates a corresponding mechanical vibration signal to the skull bone. The adaptive algorithm controls the filter so that the mechanical vibration signal of the bone conduction transducer offsets the noise component sensed by the at least one noise sensing element so as to minimize the noise component sensed by the implantable microphone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2017
    Date of Patent: December 28, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Martin J. Kerber
  • Patent number: 11184719
    Abstract: A signal processing arrangement generates optical stimulation signals to optical stimulation contacts in an implanted cochlear implant array. An input sound signal is transformed into band pass signals that each represent an associated band of audio frequencies, with each band pass signal includes an envelope component characterizing loudness of the band pass signal, and a fine structure component characterizing temporal details of the band pass signal. One or more of the signal components of each band pass signal is half wave rectified to remove negative phase signals. Signal slope is determined that corresponds to rate of change of the rectified one or more signal components. Then constant-rate optical stimulation pulses are generated for one or more given band signals only when the rectified one or more signal components has a positive signal slope.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 23, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Dirk Meister, Darshan Shah
  • Patent number: 11167136
    Abstract: The invention relates to a device (10) and to a method for electric stimulation. Said device comprises a stimulator (12) which comprises a multi-channel electrode arrangement with several stimulation electrodes (E1-E12). Said device also comprises a processor (18) which determines the pulse rate and the pulse amplitude for each stimulation electrode (E1-E12), and which controls the electrode arrangement for releasing stimulation impulses of the determined pulse rate and pulse amplitude. Said processor (18) determines the pulse rate for each stimulation electrode (E1-E12) dependent on the position in the cochlea. The invention also relates to a computer program product by means of which a data processing system determines the pulse rate for each stimulation electrode (E1-E12) dependent on the actual position thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 24, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Uwe Baumann, Tobias Rader
  • Patent number: 11103713
    Abstract: An electrical feedthrough assembly for an implantable medical device includes an outer ferrule of metallic material having an outer surface hermetically sealed to an implantable device housing. There is an inner feedthrough assembly which is hermetically sealed within the ferrule and which has a structure of sintered layers that include: i. an electrical insulator of ceramic insulator material, ii. one or more electrically conductive vias of metallized conductive material embedded within and extending through the electrical insulator, and iii. a transition interface region around each of the conductive vias comprising a gradient mixture of the ceramic insulator material and the metallized conductive material forming a gradual transition and a mechanical bond between the electrical insulator and the conductive via.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 31, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Dominik Hammerer, Janika Boltz
  • Patent number: 11077302
    Abstract: A fitting system is described for fitting electrode contacts of cochlear implant electrode array implanted in a cochlea of an implanted patient. A test stimulation generator delivers to at least one of the electrode contacts a test stimulation sequence at a variable charge level and a variable stimulation rate over time, wherein the charge level and stimulation rate are inversely related as a function of a defined loudness percept by the implanted patient to the test stimulation sequence. A response measurement module obtains objective response measurements of auditory neural tissues of the implanted patient that are affected by the test stimulation sequence. A fit mapping module defines a patient-specific fit map for the electrode contacts of cochlear implant electrode array based on the objective response measurements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Mathias Kals
  • Patent number: 11007363
    Abstract: A method of forming an implantable electrode having electrode contacts on an electrode carrier having a coating includes providing a solution of silicone and dexamethasone dissolved in a solvent, applying the solution to the electrode carrier or to a substrate, and subjecting the solution to a two-step heat treatment process that includes a first heat treatment between about 50 and 90° C. for about 1 to 3 hours and a second heat treatment at an elevated temperature between 90° C. and 140° C. for about 2 hours in order to form the coating.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 7, 2018
    Date of Patent: May 18, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Thomas Tritthart
  • Patent number: 11006229
    Abstract: A round window coupling device is described for a hybrid electric-mechanical stimulation hearing implant system. A rigid outer shell securely fits into a round window niche in a cochlear outer surface of a recipient patient. An electrode groove in the outer surface of the outer shell snuggly fits around a portion of a cochlear implant electrode array passing through the round window niche. A coupling filling is enclosed within the outer shell to couple mechanical vibrations from the proximal end to the distal end with minimal attenuation. A transducer receiver at the proximal end connects to and receives vibrations from a drive surface of a mechanical transducer. And a drive face at the distal end interfaces to perilymph fluid within the cochlea of the recipient patient to deliver vibrations from the coupling filling to the perilymph fluid with minimal attenuation for perception as sound.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2018
    Date of Patent: May 11, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventor: Daniel Schurzig
  • Patent number: 10994128
    Abstract: An implantable electrode arrangement for a cochlear implant system is described. A retraction limiter fits around and securely engages a portion of the distal end of an electrode lead. The retraction limiter includes flexible retraction limiting projections longitudinally distributed along its outer surface. An insertion tube fits around the electrode array and the retraction limiter and engages against the outer surface of the patient cochlea at a cochlear opening. An insertion plunger fits within the insertion tube and engages against the proximal end of the retraction limiter. The insertion plunger slides within the insertion tube to push against the proximal end of the retraction limiter to push the electrode array through the cochlear opening into the patient cochlea.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 4, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Daniel Schurzig, Max Frölich
  • Patent number: RE48647
    Abstract: An implantable magnet that can freely turn in response to an external magnetic field, thus avoiding torque and demagnetization on the implantable magnet. The implantable magnet can be combined with an electric switching function depending on the orientation of an external magnetic field, thus protecting an implanted coil and/or implant electronics against induction of over-voltage or performing an electric switching function for other various purposes. The magnetic switch may further include, for example, a first switching contact and a second switching contact. A magnetically soft body that includes an electrically conductive surface is shiftable between a first position where the body is in simultaneous contact with the first and second switching contacts, and a second position where the body is out of contact with at least one of the first and second switching contacts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 14, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 13, 2021
    Assignee: MED-EL Elektromedizinische Geraete GmbH
    Inventors: Martin Zimmerling, Erwin Hochmair