The goal of my research and clinical work is to maximize the communication potential of children with hearing loss. My philosophy is to provide individualized treatment aimed to help each child realize their language potential and to maximize their medical well-being. Whether performing cochlear implant surgery, identifying the medical cause of hearing loss, or conducting infant hearing research, I am truly privileged to be able to impact the lives of my patients and their families.


David L. Horn, M.D., joined the University of Washington faculty in 2010. He is currently associate professor in the Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery as well as adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences. He earned his medical degree at the Medical College of Wisconsin and then completed an otolaryngology residency at Indiana University. His pediatric otolaryngology fellowship training was subsequently completed at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Horn is the medical co-director of the Pediatric Cochlear Implant program at Seattle Children’s Hospital and sees patients with hearing loss, ear disorders, balance issues, and other general pediatric otolaryngological problems. Dr. Horn also conducts research as the principal investigator of the Prosthetic Auditory Development Laboratory at the Virginia Merrill Bloedel Hearing Research Center. His work, funded by the National Institutes of Health, seeks to understand how early hearing abilities in infancy are related to later spoken-language development. Originally from Los Angeles, Dr. Horn is thrilled to be back on the west coast. His lovely wife and three tempestuous daughters keep him busy enough when away from the hospital and the lab. When he has a free moment, he spends his time cycling, cooking, watching old movies, and playing guitar.


Undergraduate Education: University of California, Santa Barbara, 1992-1996

Medical School: Medical College of Wisconsin, 2002-2009

Residency: Indiana University, 2002-2009

Fellowship: University of Pittsburgh, 2009-2010

Other Training: MS in Physiology from Georgetown University, 1996-199; Postdoctoral Research Fellow (T-32 Pisoni), 2003-2005

Board Certification: Otolaryngology, 2010


Awards and honors 

2014: Seymour R. Cohen Award for Pediatric Laryngology and Broncho-esophagology, ABEA
2007: Resident travel award, Triological Society Middle Section
2006: 1st place, resident clinical research award, Triological Society Middle Section
2005: Resident travel award, Association for Research in Otolaryngology Midwinter Meeting
2001: Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honors Society, elected as medical student

Academic interests 


Dr. Horn's clinical interests include pediatric cochlear implantation, congenital and acquired hearing loss, chronic middle ear disease and cholesteatoma, pediatric dysphagia and posterior supraglottic/glottic incompetence, and sleep endoscopy.


Dr. Horn's major research interest is in auditory development of infants who receive cochlear implants. His NIH-funded work investigates how basic auditory abilities emerge in implanted infants and whether these skills predict later speech perception and spoken-language development.

Recent Publications

Purcell PL, Edwards TC, Wisneski M, Chan DK, Ou H, Horn DL, Skirko JR, Sie KCY. Unilateral Hearing Loss in Youth: Development of Candidate Items for a Condition-Specific Validated Instrument., Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2018 Aug194599818797092

Horn DL, Dudley DJ, Dedhia K, Nie K, Drennan WR, Won JH, Rubinstein JT, Werner LA. Erratum: Effects of age and hearing mechanism on spectral resolution in normal hearing and cochlear-implanted listeners [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 141(1), 613-623 (2017)]., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 2017 May; 141(5):2977

Purcell PL, Shinn JR, Coggeshall SS, Phillips G, Paladin A, Sie KCY, Horn DL. Progression of Unilateral Hearing Loss in Children With and Without Ipsilateral Cochlear Nerve Canal Stenosis: A Hazard Analysis., Otol. Neurotol. 2017 07; 38(6):e138-e144

Horn DL, Dudley DJ, Dedhia K, Nie K, Drennan WR, Won JH, Rubinstein JT, Werner LA. Effects of age and hearing mechanism on spectral resolution in normal hearing and cochlear-implanted listeners., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 2017 01; 141(1):613

Miller C, Purcell PL, Dahl JP, Johnson K, Horn DL, Chen ML, Chan DK, Parikh SR. Clinically small tonsils are typically not obstructive in children during drug-induced sleep endoscopy., Laryngoscope 2017 08; 127(8):1943-1949