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Debara Lyn Tucci, MD

Adjunct Professor in the Department of Head and Neck Surgery & Communication Sciences
Office: 1559 Hosp South, Blue Zone, Durham, NC 27710
Campus Mail: DUMC Box 3805 Med Ctr, Durham, NC 27710

The focus of current research efforts is in defining the effects of conductive hearing impairment on the development and function of the central auditory system. The ultimate goal of this research is to understand the impact of hearing loss, such as that associated with otitis media, on the development of auditory function in children. Experiments are currently being performed in which central auditory system activity is studied using the 2-deoxyglucose method following unilateral neonatal conductive hearing loss. Future experiments will examine changes in cell structure and interneuronal connections following acute and chronic conductive hearing loss in both neonatal and adult animals.

A second research program is focused on issues related to the cochlear implant. The cochlear implant is a device which allows for electrical stimulation of the auditory nerve in profoundly deaf patients. It has previously been demonstrated in animal studies as well as in human tissue histopathology that degeneration of central auditory pathways occurs following severe damage to the inner ear. It has been suggested that the introduction of electrical stimulation via a cochlear implant may prevent or reverse some of these degenerative changes. Experiments conducted previously examined this issue in the neonatally and adult deafened rat. Tissue analysis is currently undergoing completion.

Education and Training

  • M.D., University of Virginia, 1985


Sumner, Christian J., Debara L. Tucci, and Susan E. Shore. “Responses of ventral cochlear nucleus neurons to contralateral sound after conductive hearing loss.” J Neurophysiol 94, no. 6 (December 2005): 4234–43.

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Gates, George A., J Douglas Green, Debara L. Tucci, and Steven A. Telian. “The effects of transtympanic micropressure treatment in people with unilateral Meniere's disease.” Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 130, no. 6 (June 2004): 718–25.

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Asaoka, Katsuyuki, David M. Barrs, John H. Sampson, John T. McElveen, Debara L. Tucci, and Takanori Fukushima. “Intracanalicular meningioma mimicking vestibular schwannoma.” Ajnr Am J Neuroradiol 23, no. 9 (October 2002): 1493–96.


Tucci, Debara, Nell B. Cant, and Dianne Durham. “Conductive hearing loss results in changes in cytochrome oxidase activity in gerbil central auditory system.” J Assoc Res Otolaryngol 3, no. 1 (March 2002): 89–106.

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Alexander, Michael J., Tony P. Smith, and Debara L. Tucci. “Treatment of an iatrogenic petrous carotid artery pseudoaneurysm with a Symbiot covered stent: technical case report.” Neurosurgery 50, no. 3 (March 2002): 658–62.

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Cook, Raymond D., Thomas Y. Hung, Roger L. Miller, David W. Smith, and Debara L. Tucci. “Effects of conductive hearing loss on auditory nerve activity in gerbil.” Hear Res 164, no. 1–2 (February 2002): 127–37.

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Tucci, D. L., N. B. Cant, and D. Durham. “Effects of conductive hearing loss on gerbil central auditory system activity in silence.” Hear Res 155, no. 1–2 (May 2001): 124–32.

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