– Double tinnitus is not an indication of brain damage

Dr. Keith Roach

Dear Dr. Roach: Years ago, when I was in combat, there was an explosion very close. The blast hit my left side and I almost immediately noticed a faint buzzing in my left ear. In no time, he became stronger and more consistent. Through research, I deduced that I had tinnitus. My question is, sometimes I hear two distinct ringtones/tones at the same time in this ear. Is this an indication of tinnitus in the left ear and possible brain damage? Can two distinct tones in the same ear at the same time be caused by tinnitus? — MW
Answer: Thank you for your service and sacrifice.
Tinnitus is a sensation of noise in one or both ears when no noise is present. The type of noise varies among affected individuals, but most commonly it is described as ringing, hissing, or buzzing. Most cases of tinnitus are due to hearing loss caused by damage to the cells responsible for hearing in the cochlea, the organ of hearing in the inner ear. Exposure to loud noise is a common cause of another type of hearing loss, sensorineural. This type is due to damage to the cochlea.
Tinnitus with two different frequencies (tones or tones) has a name, double tinnitus, and it is rare. In a Polish study, only seven out of 614 people with tinnitus had two different frequencies in the same ear. Three people had two different frequencies in BOTH ears. Almost everyone, like you, has had sudden hearing loss.
There does not have to be brain damage to have double tinnitus, and there is no reason to suspect brain damage simply because of the presence of double tinnitus.
Dear Dr. Roach: I have shown elevated testosterone levels since I started monitoring. In 2016 my level was 1254. It has gone up and down slightly with my most recent level being 1090 last January.
I am a healthy, physically active 69 year old male, and the only medication I started taking in 2015 was finasteride for benign prostatic hyperplasia. I stopped taking finasteride from August 2021 and my 2022 level has not decreased. Should I be worried? – A F
Answer: About 97.5% of healthy men over the age of 19 will have a testosterone level below 950. When a man has a level above this level, it would raise concern that the man was taking an excess of hormones (this is clearly not the case for you) or the presence of a testosterone-producing tumor. These are usually made in the adrenal gland and are often malignant (cancerous). So they are a concern, but are quite unusual.
Men who take testosterone supplements to reach your level are at risk for some alarming medical conditions, including dangerously high red blood cell counts, blood clots, and possibly heart attack. However, your stable levels suggest that you are among the 2.5% of men who have high and normal testosterone levels. This seems to be your normal level and shouldn’t worry you.
Finasteride, by the way, does not decrease normal testosterone; it blocks the formation of dihydrotestosterone, whose actions in the body appear to be to cause hair loss and enlarge the prostate.
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Dr Roach regrets that he cannot respond to individual letters, but will incorporate them into the column whenever possible. Readers can send questions to [email protected] or mail to 628 Virginia Dr., Orlando, FL 32803.
(c) 2022 North America Syndicate Inc.


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