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Handb Clin Neurol


Sensory neurologic disorders: Tinnitus.


Chemali Z, Nehmé R, Fricchione G
Handb Clin Neurol. 2019; 165:365-381.
PMID: 31727224.


Tinnitus is the sensation of hearing a sound with no external auditory stimulus present. It is a public health issue correlated with multiple comorbidities and precipitating factors such as noise exposure, military service, and traumatic brain injury, migraine, insomnia, small vessel disease, smoking history, stress exposure, anxiety, depression, and socioeconomic status. Clinical experience and a recent literature review point at tinnitus as a neuropsychiatric condition involving both auditory and nonauditory cortical areas of the brain and affecting brain-auditory circuitry. In fact, brain-ear connections have been highlighted in different models. Forward management of this disorder should take this body of research into consideration as tinnitus remains a challenging condition to evaluate and treat with current management protocols still symptomatic at best. With a better understanding of the etiologic factors and comorbidities of tinnitus, additional research trials and new therapeutic approaches could see the light to tackle this public health disability bringing hope to patients and doctors.