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Posted by : Prince, 01 Jun 2011 04:09 PM
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The term indicates a persistent sound in the ear which cannot be heard by others and is not caused by any external sound. It can be ringing, roaring, hissing, buzzing, chirping, hissing or tinkling. Tinnitus is not a disease and is not life-threatening.

Subjective: heard by the patient only
Objective: sound is heard by the patient and the observer

The exact cause is unknown. The postulated causes are:
Noise induced
Ear wax
Medications: e.g Aspirin, Chloroquine, Antibiotics (Gentamicin), ACE inhibitors (Enapril)
Ear infections
Temporomandibular (Jaw) joint problems
Blood flow problems such as arterio-venous malformations, carotid artery atherosclerosis, hypertension
Barotrauma: rapid change in environmental pressure
Acoustic neuroma
Meniere's disease : increased pressure of the inner ear fluid (endolymph)
Otosclerosis (condition wherein there is fixation of the small stapes bone in the middle ear)

Essentially, clinical. Investigations done to detect the cause of tinnitus are audiogram, X-rays, CT / MRI scan of the ear & brain, MR Angiography

Consult your ENT doctor for persistent tinnitus.
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