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What Is Tinnitus?

What is Tinnitus?

Do you (or a loved one) experience a ringing in your ears that no one else can hear? If so, you are not alone. You have tinnitus, an audiological and neurological condition experienced by nearly 45 million Americans.

Tinnitus is a symptom, not a diagnosis. Tinnitus is the perception of sound when no actual external noise is present. While it is commonly referred to as “ringing in the ears,” tinnitus can manifest many different perceptions of sound, including buzzing, hissing, whistling, swooshing, and clicking. In some rare cases, tinnitus patients report hearing music. Tinnitus can be both an acute (temporary) condition or a chronic (ongoing) health issue.

  • Risk Factors
  • Age
  • Noise Exposure
  • History of Depression or Anxiety

How is the Cause of Tinnitus Determined?
The cause requires a systematic approach and in most cases there is something that can be done about it. First get a complete history :

  • When it started
  • Was there any history or trauma?
  • Any new medications
  • Any new medical conditions
  • Anything which makes it better or worse?
  • Any other ear nose or throat symptoms which make it worse or better?
  • Any new exercises or musckuloskeletal conditions esp the neck region?

Next Steps
Have a complete physical exam by an Otolaryngologist.
Not only the ears but the nose and throat can relate to causes of tinnitus
Have a complete audiogram by a board certified audiologist.

Sometimes blood work is done: in the case of anemia, thyroid conditions, lyme disease, autoimmune conditions After all the steps have been taken they will be the doctors will review your individual case and formulate a treatment plan. The treatment plan may also involve imaging studies like an MRI, a CT scan or an MRA.

If you or a loved one suffer from  buzzing, hissing, whistling, swooshing, and clicking you may have tinnitus, please call Totum Health at 212-288-2222 to schedule an appointment. 

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