Learn More Below About The Different Types Of Tinnitus
Types of Tinnitus
Any noise heard by the patient in the absence of an external stimulus is known as tinnitus. Tinnitus is a symptom much like pain. It can be a very distressing and bothersome symptom. The underlying cause of your tinnitus requires to be investigated particularly as it can be related to serious conditions. At the Harley Street Audiovestibular clinic, our medical specialists have the experience and knowledge to reliably investigate for all causes of tinnitus and to guide you appropriately on further management. We also have state-of-the-art diagnostic tests, and highly experienced audiologists, who aid our clinicians in the assessment process.
There are different types of tinnitus can be experienced.
Bilateral non-pulsatile tinnitus
Tinnitus in both ears can be a sign of underlying hearing loss. It can be on occasion related to other pathology such as migraine or sometimes related to medications. ototoxicity secondary to medications or other causes can potentially result in tinnitus as the first warning sign. Tinnitus can also be secondary to problems with eustachian tube function. A thorough investigation of your hearing, cochlear, auditory nerve and eustachian tube function can help reveal the answer and guide further management.
Unilateral non-pulsatile tinnitus
One-sided tinnitus is generally considered to be a red flag as it is more likely to be related to an underlying abnormality either affecting your inner ears, nerves and its connection to the brain. Thorough and early investigation by an appropriate medical specialist is recommended. Investigations include hearing, cochlear and auditory nerve function tests as well as imaging such as MRI or CT scan.
Tinnitus which is in keeping with your pulse and heart beat is known as pulsatile tinnitus. It can affect one or both ears. It requires a detailed investigation of all underlying vascular (in relation to blood vessel) causes such as aneurysms and A-V fistulas. Other potential causes include superior semicircular canal dehiscence, anaemia, conductive hearing loss, overactive thyroid, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, head and neck tumours such as globus tumour, narrowing of arteries and high blood pressure. Investigations include detailed hearing assessment, cochlear and auditory nerve function tests, blood tests as well as specialist imaging as per pulsatile tinnitus protocol. Early assessment and management is recommended.
Tinnitus that can be heard by both the patient as well as someone else who is listening is known as objective tinnitus. Objective tinnitus can be secondary to severe blood vessel abnormalities which required detailed assessment by an appropriate medical specialist. Other common causes include eustachian tube problems including patulous eustachian tube, middle ear problems such as myoclonus. To assess this eustachian tube function tests as well as middle ear tests such as acoustic reflex decay can be employed to demonstrate the objective movement and clicking arising from the auditory system. Management depends on the underlying cause.
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