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Modelling and Simulation in Engineering
Volume 2009, Article ID 570124, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2009/570124
Research Article

The Estimation of the Time Constant of the Human Inner Ear Pressure Change by Noninvasive Technique

1Laboratory of Biomechanics and Anatomy, School of Medicine, Clermont 1 University, BAPS EA 3533, Clermont-Ferrand, France
2Laboratory of Sensory Biophysics, School of Medicine, Clermont 1 University, Clermont-Ferrand, France

Received 18 August 2008; Accepted 22 April 2009

Academic Editor: Andrzej Swierniak

Copyright © 2009 Raghida Traboulsi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

We propose a noninvasive method to estimate the time constant. The calculation of this factor permits us to understand the pressure variations of the inner ear and also predict the behavior of the flow resistance of the cochlear aqueduct. A set of mathematical relationships incorporating the intralabyrinthine pressure, the intracranial pressure, and the time constant was applied. The modeling process describes the hydrodynamic effects of the cerebrospinal fluid in the intralabyrinthine fluid space, where the input and output of the created model are, respectively, the sinusoidal variation of the respiration signal and the distortion product of otoacoustic emissions. The obtained results were compared with those obtained by different invasive techniques. A long time constant was detected each time when the intracranial pressure increased; this phenomenon is related to the role of the cochlear aqueduct described elsewhere. The interpretation of this model has revealed the ability of these predictions to provide a greater precision for hydrodynamic variation of the inner ear, consequently the variation of the dynamic process of the cerebrospinal fluid.