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  Newsmakers   ‘Love hormone’ quietens tinnitus

‘Love hormone’ quietens tinnitus

PTI
Published : Sep 26, 2016, 5:44 am IST
Updated : Sep 26, 2016, 5:44 am IST

Oxytocin, dubbed the “love hormone” because it promotes social connections, might also help relieve the annoying and disturbing noises of tinnitus — a chronic ringing in the ears, a new study has foun

Oxytocin, dubbed the “love hormone” because it promotes social connections, might also help relieve the annoying and disturbing noises of tinnitus — a chronic ringing in the ears, a new study has found.

“Oxytocin has actions in the brain and the ear that may help in tinnitus treatment and provide immediate relief,” said lead researcher Andre-ia Azevedo from the Universidade Federal de Sao Paulo in Brazil.

Researchers randomly assigned 17 people with tinnitus, average age 63, to puffs of oxytocin or a placebo (distilled water) in each nostril. The study volunteers were asked to assess their symptoms 30 minutes after treatment, and then again, 24 hours later. Azevedo’s team found that patients who received oxytocin reported a significant reduction in tinnitus, compared with those who received the placebo. However, it is not clear how oxytocin works to relieve tinnitus, “Health Day” reported.

She speculated that it may have an effect in the ear, probably related to fluid regulation in the inner ear, and a brain effect that may be related to the production of the neurotransmitter dopamine. “For some patients, tinnitus disappeared or reached a non-distress level,” Azevedo said. “As usual in tinnitus treatment, in some patients the tinnitus kept low, and for some it raised after the therapy ended,” she said.

Location: United States, Washington