Research Scientist, Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery

Riggs William
Audiologist, Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery


BS: Wright State University, Business Management, 2006-2009
The University of Akron and the Northeast Ohio AuD Consortium, Audiology, 2009-2013
Evokes Inc., Neurophysiologic Intraoperative Monitoring- 2014
PhD- Pre-Candidacy:
The Ohio State University, Auditory Physiology - 2018

Research Interests:

  • Electrophysiologic biomarkers of hearing loss 
  • Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder
  • Cochlear implants and performance outcomes
  • Electrophysiology of human sensory systems
Research Projects

Research Projects

Intraoperative measures of auditory function

This study utilizes auditory evoked potentials during cochlear implantation and other procedures of the inner ear in adults and children to improve preservation of residual hearing and to better understand the mechanisms of hearing loss and the time-line of surgery-related hearing loss. Further, this project attempts to capture the various electrophysiologic activities (biomarkers) that are unique to specific etiologies of hearing loss. Finally, utilizing the intraoperative findings this study aims to begin to develop new techniques and technologies which can be used to improve preservation of residual hearing during surgery and allow for optimal outcomes to be achieved as well as better delineate the true site-of-lesion in patients with hearing loss.

Cochlear implantation during vestibular schwannoma removal and labyrinthectomy for treatment of meniere’s disease

Currently, patients with a vestibular schwannoma (tumor of the hearing nerve) who undergo surgical treatment via a translabyrinthine approach lose complete hearing in the affected ear (single sided deafness). Also, patients suffering from unilateral (one ear) Meniere’s disease who undergo surgical treatment (labyrinthectomy) lose complete hearing in the affected ear. These patients are not traditional candidates for a cochlear implant due to having a normal or decent hearing ear on the other side. Therefore, this clinical trial is exploring the long-term benefits of simultaneous cochlear implantation in the same surgical procedure (translabyrinthine or labyrinthectomy) for patients who do not meet traditional FDA candidacy.

Additional Research

Neural Encoding and Auditory Perception in Cochlear Implant Users
This study is designed to use both psychophysical and electrophysiological measures to evaluate temporal encoding and processing at both the peripheral and the central levels of the auditory system in adult cochlear implant users. The long-term goal of this research is to better understand the neurophysiologic basis of speech perception deficits in older (≥ 65 years) CI users. This investigation is being led by Dr. Shuman He and is currently funded by the NIDCD.
Research Accomplishments

Research Accomplishments

Current Research Support

Title: Neural Encoding and Auditory Perception in Cochlear Implant Users
PI: Shuman He, MD, PhD
Dates: 7/1/2017- 6/30/2022
Name of agency: NIDCD and NIGMS, R01
Role: Research Scientist/Audiologist
Award number if applicable: DC016038: $1,549,944


Riggs WJ, Dwyer RT, Holder J, Mattingly JK, Ortmann A, Nobel JH, Valensuela CV, O’Connell BP, Litvak LM, Koka K, Buchman CA, Labadie R, Adunka OF. Intra-cochlear electrocochleography: insertion and post-insertion indicators of electrode location during cochlear implantation. Otology and Neurotology. 2019, In Press.

Koka K, Riggs WJ, Dwyer R, Holder JT, Noble JH, Dawant BM, Ortmann A, Valenzuela CV, Mattingly JK, Harris MM, O'Connell BP, Litvak LM, Adunka OF, Buchman CA, Labadie RF. Intra-cochlear electrocochleography during cochlear implant electrode insertion is predictive of final scalar location. Otology and Neurotology. 2018 Sep;39(8):e654-e659. 
Akapo K, Riggs WJ, Harris MS, Dodson EE. Hearing preservation after translabyrinthine vestibular schwannoma excision.  Annals of Otology Rhinology & Laryngology 2018; 127(8):563-567. 

Riggs WJ, Roche JP, Giardina CK, Harris MS, Bastian ZJ, Fontenot TE, Buchman CA, Brown KD, Adunka OF, Fitzpatrick DC. Intraoperative electrocochleographic characteristics of auditory neuropathy spectrum disorder. Frontiers in Neuroscience. 11:416. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2017.00416

Harris MS, Riggs WJ, Giardina CK, O’Connell BP, Holder J, Koka K, Wanna GB, Labadie RF Fitzpatrick DC, Adunka OF. Patterns seen during electrode insertion using intracochlear electrocochleography obtained directly through a cochlear implant. Otology and Neurotology 2017;38(10): 1415-1420.  

Riggs WJ, Harris MS, Adunka OF. Neurophysiologic monitoring in otologic and neurotologic surgery. In Glasscock-Shambaugh Surgery of the Ear, 7th edition (eds. David S. Haynes, Matthew L. Carlson, D. Bradley Welling and Lloyd Minor), People’s Medical Publishing House, Raleigh, NC, 2017.

Harris MS, Riggs WJ, Koka K, Litvak LM, Malhotra P, Moberly AC, O’Connell BP, Holder J, DiLella FA, Boccio CM, Wanna GB, Labadie RF, Adunka OF. Real­time intracochlear electrocochleography obtained directly through a cochlear implant. Otology and Neurotology 2017;38(6):e107-e113.

Riggs WJ, Harris MS, Adunka OF, Moberly AC. Intraoperative electrocochleography: a window into endolymphatic hydrops in a patient with an endolymphatic sac tumor. Otology and Neurotology 2017; 38(4):547-550.
Other Information

Other Information

Academic Appointments

Adjunct Faculty, 2017 - Current
Electroneurodiagnostic Technology Program
Sinclair Community College, Dayton, OH

Awards and Honors

Rajkumar S, Adunka OF, Riggs WJ. 1st place poster- Intraoperative Electrocochleography Characteristics of Patients with Vestibular Schwannomas presented at OSU’s Engineering in Healthcare: Industry and Research Symposium for graduate and undergraduate students. March 3, 2018. 

Kenneth W. Berger, PhD Memorial Award, Best Research Manuscript, Northeast Ohio AuD Consortium, 2011