Hidden Hearing Respond to Research Which Reveals Epilepsy Drug Could Prevent Tinnitus

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Experts in private hearing healthcare, Hidden Hearing, have responded to new research which could help prevent tinnitus.

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The auditory research group at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that if treated with retigabine straight after noise exposure, subjects didn’t develop hearing problems.

A study into epilepsy drug, retigabine, has revealed why tinnitus occurs and how it could be possible to prevent the condition occurring – according to research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and reported in the Daily Mail.

The auditory research group at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that if treated with retigabine straight after noise exposure, subjects didn’t develop hearing problems.

The researchers focused on an area of the brain that is home to an important auditory centre called the dorsal cochlea nucules. Previous research has found that tinnitus is associated with hyperactivity in certain parts of the brain, when cells fire impulses even when there is no sound to perceive. They looked at the biophysical properties of tiny channels called KCNQ channels in which potassium ions travel in and out of the cell.

The scientists found that those treated with retigabine immediately after exposure to noise did not develop tinnitus. The research could led to treatment for soldiers and workers in loud environments in the future.

A spokesperson from Hidden Hearing said:

“This new research reveals a possible solution to tinnitus which could prove incredibly useful for people at increased risk of exposure to loud noise. Tinnitus is a frustrating condition to live with that causes people to hear whistling, clicking, roaring and other phantom sounds. To offer a possible preventative measure for this, after noise exposure, is encouraging progress for the hearing impaired.”

With more than 40 years’ experience in treating hearing loss, Hidden Hearing is entrusted with the care of more than 100,000 people each year. The firm has 84 hearing centres across the UK, all catering for a range of needs and budgets. Specialising in hearing tests and hearing aids, the company also offer a variety of hearing aid accessories and in 2005, became the first dedicated hearing retailer to be recognised as an Investor in People.

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Vicky Moore
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