January 13, 2011

Rebooting the Brain Helps Stop the Ring of Tinnitus

Science Daily, Science Daily


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Targeted nerve stimulation could yield a long-term reversal of tinnitus, a debilitating hearing impairment affecting at least 10 percent of senior citizens and up to 40 percent of military veterans, according to an article posted in the Jan. 12 online edition of Nature.

Researchers Dr. Michael Kilgard and Dr. Navzer Engineer from The University of Texas at Dallas and University-affiliated biotechnology firm MicroTransponder report that stimulation of the vagus nerve paired with sounds eliminated tinnitus in rats. A clinical trial in humans is due to begin in the next few months.

Described as a ringing in the ears, tinnitus causes mild irritation for some people but is disabling and painful for many others. The U.S. Veterans Administration spends about $1...

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TAGGED: Ears, Nervous System, Brain, Hearing Loss, Clinical Trials, Tinnitus

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