A Swedish survey of the medical records of patients with sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) and tinnitus has shown that despite their hearing loss, only 39% of the patients used hearing aids. 555 of the patients (78%) had symmetric hearing loss, while 159 (22%) had an asymmetric hearing loss.
The survey was based on reviews of medical records of all patients who had received the diagnosis sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) in Östergötland County, Sweden, between 2004 and 2007. Patients between 20 and 80 years with tinnitus and a pure tone average (PTA) lower than 70dB HL were included in the study. In all, 714 patients were included in the survey.
Majority over 50 years of age
The majority of patients (79%) were in the age group over 50. In male patients with bilateral tinnitus, the pure tone average (PTA) for the left ear was significantly higher than for the right ear. In all, 400 patients had no hearing aids. 220 of those had unilateral tinnitus and 180 patients had bilateral tinnitus. 219 patients had a pure tone average (PTA) above 20dB HL and did not use hearing aids.
The aim of the study was to describe a large group of patients with tinnitus and sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) and also to explore the possibility of finding potential differences between various diagnoses within sensorineural hearing loss.