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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 87  |  Page : 95--102

Tinnitus, Medial Olivocochlear System, and Music Exposure in Adolescents

1 Center for Research and Transfer in Acoustics (CINTRA), Associated Unit of CONICET, National Technological University (UTN), Córdoba Regional Faculty; National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET), Argentina
2 Center for Research and Transfer in Acoustics (CINTRA), Associated Unit of CONICET, National Technological University (UTN), Córdoba Regional Faculty, Argentina

Correspondence Address:
María Hinalaf
Postdoctoral Fellow, Maestro. M. Lopez esq., Cruz Roja, 5016 Cordoba
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/nah.NAH_96_16

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Introduction: The most common cause of tinnitus is the exposure to noise; in the case of adolescents, music is the main sound source they are exposed to. Currently, one of the hypotheses about the genesis of tinnitus is related to the deterioration in the functioning of the medial olivocochlear system (MOCS). Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the presence or absence of tinnitus in adolescents with normal hearing and to relate it to: (a) the functioning of the MOCS, by the contralateral suppression of the transient evoked otoacoustic emissions (TEOAEs) and (b) the musical general exposure (MGE). Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive correlational study was conducted. The sample was composed by adolescents with ages between 14 and 15. Two questionnaires were administered, one in relation to the subjective report of tinnitus and the other in relation to recreational activities to know the MGE. Results: The results showed that the amplitude of frequencies (1000, 1500, 2000, and 3000 Hz) and global amplitude of TEOAEs, with and without acoustic contralateral stimulation, were higher in the group without tinnitus, with a statistically significant difference (P < 0.05). The suppressive effect was higher in the group without tinnitus; however, there was no statistically significant difference. Contrastingly, a significant association (P < 0.05) between exposure to music and tinnitus was observed; 72.41% of the adolescents with high exposure to music had tinnitus. Discussion and Conclusion: The results of the present investigation provide a contribution to the hypothesis of “the participation of the MOCS.” Furthermore, a high MGE can be considered a risk factor for the onset of tinnitus.


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