Question about Onset

Discussion in 'Dr. Stephen Nagler (MD)' started by Mpt, Apr 2, 2014.

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    1. Mpt

      Mpt Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Hi Dr Nagler,

      Your previous post where you mentioned individuals getting tinnitus during high stress times: studying for the bar, etc. raised a question in my mind about my own onset. I had an infection, was on azithromycin and had just had my ears waxed, and later that night while in the shower my left ear started to ring. Five days later I went on a Prednisone taper and after coming off the prednisone I experienced total silence in both ears for about 4-5 days at which point I realized that my right ear started to ring when placing it on the pillow at night. Fast forward to 2 months later-- my left ear (my initial T onset) is pretty much silent now, and has beeen for a month and a half-- my right ear is ringing as loud as ever. (my hearing is worse in my right ear too) I was in such a state of stress and panic after the initial onset in my left ear, it seems likely (to me at least) that I never would have developed T in the ear in which I have it now if not for the stress that I initially felt about the T in my other ear that has since vanished. Since bilateral T is so prevalent, do you think that there is a psycho-somatic aspect to getting it in a second ear, as the chance that both ears develop T from the same auditory insult would seem low?
    2. Dr. Nagler

      Dr. Nagler Member Clinician Benefactor

      Atlanta, Georgia USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Hi @Mpt -

      I do not think anything about tinnitus is psychosomatic. I consider it to have a neurophysiological basis, not a psychosomatic one.

      Consistent with that neurophysiological basis, tinnitus can emerge under times of stress - and once apparent it can either become intrusive or not depending on whether or not there is limbic-autonomic reinforcement. This emergence can be viewed as stress "pulling the covers" off the tinnitus and revealing it. But in such cases, the tinnitus was there all along and unnoticed.

      The above description specifically refers to tinnitus that first declares itself at a time of stress or mental anguish. It does not refer to tinnitus that develops, for instance, as the result of a prolonged noise insult.

      Hope this clarifies more than confuses.

      Dr. Stephen Nagler

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