NIDCD National Temporal Bone, Hearing and Balance Pathology Resource Registry


Conservation of Temporal Bone Collections

Many human temporal bone collections in the United States are currently inactive. Some of these are of great value, but are at risk of being discarded or lost as facilities reorganize their space. The Registry seeks to identify and conserve such at-risk collections that have potential value for research and training. The Registry serves as a broker for the transfer of these collections and associated histopathologic as well as clinical records to an active laboratory where they could be more fully utilized.

Investigators in departments that are interested in conservation should contact:

Joseph B. Nadol, Jr., MD
Massachusetts Eye and Ear
243 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114

CME Activities

The Registry organizes professional Continuing Medical Education (CME) activities directed at providing continuing education on research developments in pathology of the human auditory and vestibular systems. CME activities have included both didactic and hands-on training for otopathologists as well as technicians.

Exhibits and Meetings

The Registry regularly arranges an exhibit at three to four national meetings each year. Most exhibits are at meetings involving the scientific and research communities such as:

The Registry also targets at least one meeting per year for lay audiences such as:

Registry personnel staff these exhibits, which generally include a real time version of the temporal bone database and other informational materials.

Instructional Videotape/DVD

The Registry has produced the instructional 20-minute video, Techniques For Temporal Bone Removal, which demonstrates the correct method for removing temporal bones and related brain tissue from donors. It is meant for otolaryngologists, pathologists, and related professionals who have not had prior hands-on training in these techniques but are on-site postmortem.

This video is useful for funeral directors and embalmers who interact with physicians and procurement of donated tissues. It provides an overview of the rationale for temporal bone study and an explanation of the importance of collaboration amongst professional personnel such as primary care physicians, otolaryngologists, pathologists, and funeral directors to ensure successful procurement of donated tissues.

The video is accompanied by the scientific article, Techniques For Human Temporal Bone Removal (Nadol et al 1996), which appeared in the October 1996 issue of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery.

To obtain copies of the video at no charge contact:

Felipe Santos, MD
243 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114
Tel: 800-822-1327
Tel: 617-573-3711

Otopathology Mini-Travel Fellowship Program

The Registry funds a mini-travel fellowship program that provides research technicians and young investigators the opportunity to have a one-week, educational visit to a temporal bone laboratory. The emphasis is on the training of research assistants, technicians, and junior faculty.

The fellowship is available to:

  • U.S. hospital departments who aspire to start a new temporal bone laboratory
  • Inactive U.S. temporal bone laboratories that wish to reactivate their collections
  • Active U.S. temporal bone laboratories that wish to learn new research techniques

Up to two fellowship awards will be made each year ($1,000 per fellowship). The funds may be used to defray travel and lodging expenses. Applications will be decided on merit.

Interested applicants should submit the following:

  • An outline of the educational or training aspect of the proposed fellowship (1-2 pages)
  • Applicant’s curriculum vitae
  • Letter of support from temporal bone laboratory director or department chairman
  • Letter from the host temporal bone laboratory, indicating willingness to receive the traveling fellow

Applications should be sent to:

Felipe Santos, MD
Massachusetts Eye and Ear
243 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114