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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What are the symptoms of tinnitus?

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    Dr Smariti Kapila

    Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon

    Dr Kapila is an ENT Surgeon, who manages many general ENT issues such as: Nasal obstruction and septal deviation Snoring Tonsillitis Ear infections - otitis … View Profile

    Tinnitus is sound, in one or both ears, which affects up to 25% of people aged over 70 years.  It can sound like many things, and patients often report varied symptoms such as hearing buzzing, humming, clicking, crackling or pulsation.

    It can be:
    Objective - a ‘real’ sound generated by the body
    for example - pulsing noise due to high blood pressure, arterial or venous growths or abnormal anatomy, small muscle spasms in the ear/mouth
    Subjective - a sound in the absence of ‘real’ source from the body
    for example - inner ear hearing loss resulting in electrical signal abnormality and the perception of sound

    Tinnitus is often a simple result of hearing loss as one ages, however can represent a new one-sided hearing loss as the first sign of a growth or tumour, or a potentially serious vascular (blood vessel) problem. This is why it is important to have any tinnitus properly assessed and investigated.

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