New Tinnitus Study Shows Effect on Brain

Tinnitus means your brain stays more at attention and less at rest!

Tinnitus, a persistent ringing or buzzing in the ears, may be associated with brain changes, according to a study by the University of Illinois.  These changes keep the brain more at attention and less at rest.

Unfortunately not much is known about tinnitus due in part to the lack of a test for it. Additionally, there are many variables– for example, duration, cause, severity, concurrent hearing loss, age, type of sound, which ear and more—that further complicate research attempts. Throughout our Upstate SC practices what we find is many patients experience the effects of tinnitus long before they actually receive a diagnosis for it.

New Tinnitus Study Uses fMRI

The recent study used functional MRI to look for patterns across brain function and structure. It found that tinnitus appears to affect a region of the brain called the precuneus. This region is related to the attention network and the default mode, or background, network.

The study helps validate those who suffer from tinnitus, which can’t be heard by others or measured. “For patients, this is validating. Here is something related to tinnitus which is objective and invariant,” said Fatima Husain, a professor of speech and hearing science at the University of Illinois.

Do you or someone you love struggle with tinnitus? If so, we may be able to help.  Click here to make an appointment with Sound Hearing at one our convenient locations in the Upstate today!

To read more about the recent study on tinnitus from the University of Illinois click here.

Laura Berry