Skip to Content
View Additional Content In This Section
inner ear is made up of the cochlea and the semicircular canals.
The cochlea is the main sensory organ of hearing. Sound vibrations from
the middle ear make the fluid in the inner ear move. The fluid then bends tiny
hair cells in the cochlea. When the hair cells move, impulses travel along the
cochlear nerve to the brain. These nerve impulses are translated into sound in
The semicircular canals have special cells that detect
motion and changes in position. Tiny calcium "stones" inside your semicircular
canals help you keep your balance. When you move a certain way, such as when
you stand up or turn your head, these stones move around. This helps your brain
know which way your body is positioned.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerAnne C. Poinier, MD - Internal MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Current as ofNovember 14, 2014
Current as of:
November 14, 2014
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.