Tinnitus is defined as the perception of a sound produced involuntarily within the body. It may be the most prominent symptom of a disease process which is threatening the patient’s physical wellbeing, or merely an associated symptom of a benign condition.
The psychological effects of benign tinnitus can severely affect quality of life of the patient and their entire family. In severe cases, the psychological effects of tinnitus may even precipitate suicide.
The physician must be knowledgeable of the causes of tinnitus, aware of the severe conditions associated with the symptom, able to make the diagnosis, and offer definitive treatment or symptomatic relief.
COMMON CAUSES OF TINNITUS
- Age-related hearing loss.
- Exposure to loud noise
- Earwax blockage
- Ear bone changes
- Meniere’s disease.
- TMJ disorders.
- Head injuries or neck injuries
- Acoustic neuroma
Blood Vessel Disorders Linked to Tinnitus
In rare cases, tinnitus is caused by a blood vessel disorder. This type of tinnitus is called pulsatile tinnitus.
- Head and neck tumors:
- High blood pressure
- Turbulent blood flow
- Malformation of capillaries