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Temporary hearing loss 'could lead to permanent tinnitus'

Tuesday 13th July 2010
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Audiologists may be interested in the results of research that found temporary hearing loss caused by loud noise may lead to permanent tinnitus.

Funded by charity RNID, which has roots tracing back around a century and provides services and information for deaf and hard of hearing people, the study was based on animals.

The team examined the effects of measurable hearing loss immediately after damage caused by loud sounds.

They found that after four weeks, although the hearing loss could no longer be detected, there was elevated brain activity that has been associated with tinnitus.

Responding to the findings, RNID chief scientific advisor Dr Sohaila Rastan said: "This research illustrates just how important it is to protect your hearing from loud noise."

It shows that even if people's hearing is not permanently affected, the way their brains process sound may be changed, she went on to point out.

Written by James Puckle

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