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New treatment for ringing in the ears Submitted: 07/24/2014
MINOCQUA - A Northwoods doctor of Audiology offers a new treatment for ringing, buzzing and swishing in the ears, known as Tinnitus.

50 million Americans suffer from Tinnitus.

Some people aren't bothered by it, but it can be debilitating for others.

Dr. Christine Albertus of Minocqua's Marshfield Clinic uses a new technology to re-train the brain to ignore the sounds.

"It emits those into the ear at a level lower than the actual Tinnitus so it's not like we're trading one sound for another. The person doesn't have to all of the sudden be listening to a different sound. But what it does is it gives the neural impulses to the brain to help the brain change what it's doing which is the signal it's sending to cause the Tinnitus in the first place," Albertus explained.

People of all ages can get Tinnitus. Doctors say there is a correlation between hearing loss and ringing in the ears.

"Tinnitus is caused by changes in the structure of the inner ear. Small little hair cells, nerve cells are used for hearing. And when their structures start to change, maybe secondary to hearing loss, that's when the brain starts sending the signal saying, 'Hey, I'm missing something. I need some other sound.' And the ear starts to generate other sounds," said Albertus.

Listening to loud music and certain medications can create Tinnitus.

The clinic is offering a free information session about the new treatment.

It will be held at the Marshfield Clinic Minocqua Center on Thursday, July 31st at 6 p.m. Call (715) 358-1285 for more information.

Story By: Lauren Stephenson

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