The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy of the reconstruction of large ossicular chain defects with a combination of ionomer cement and an autogenous cortical bone graft. Different individual solutions are described if at least the handle of the malleus is present: restoration of a large defect of the long process of the incus, formation of the incus body and the long process, and replacement of the missing superstructure of the stapes with a short bone graft standing on the footplate. In a unique case, total reconstruction of the malleus handle was carried out. In further cases where the malleus and the incus were absent, the missing superstucture of the stapes was replaced by a bone graft fixed to the remnant of the anterior crus, supplemented with a cortical bone PORP. Between 1993 and 2005, 84 patients underwent middle ear operations with the use of ionomer cement. In 16 ears (9 males, 7 females), a combination of ionomer cement and autogenous cortical bone graft was used for ossicular reconstruction, with a documented follow-up of at least 6 months to 7 years. All operations were performed under general anesthesia. The components of the cement were mixed by hand and transferred to the bare bone surface with a curved needle. Complex structures were built up step by step. In seven cases, the tympanic membrane was simultaneously reconstructed. The postoperative air–bone gap was < 20 dB in 11/16, 68% of the cases. No columella rejection occurred. The reconstructed malleus handle is still intact, though the hearing has deteriorated. The audiological results are encouraging and a further prospective study is under design in order to analyze the efficacy of the combination of ionomer cement and an autogenous cortical bone graft for ossicular reconstruction. The simultaneous reconstruction of the superstructure of the stapes and the long process of the incus or the whole incus makes PORPs or TORPs superfluous, if at least the handle of the malleus is present.
Ionomer cementAutogenous bone graftOssicular reconstruction