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Duke audiologists provide comprehensive evaluation and management options to people who experience tinnitus, the perception of sound heard in the ears, or inside the head that is not from an outside source. The sounds are often described as ringing, chirping, buzzing, hissing, whistling, or humming. Our goal is to reduce tinnitus awareness and disturbance and improve your quality of life.

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About Tinnitus

If you have hearing loss, you may also experience tinnitus. Tinnitus may be a temporary symptom of a physical problem, such as wax buildup. It may also result from allergies, tumors, heart problems, and problems with your jaw, such as TMJ, and neck issues. Or, tinnitus may be a side effect of certain medications.

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Duke Health offers locations throughout the Triangle. Find one near you.


Our audiologists conduct a thorough evaluation of your tinnitus and recommend the most appropriate treatment for your condition. While there is currently no cure for tinnitus, there are several approaches that provide relief. 

Tinnitus Evaluation

The 90-minute appointment involves a questionnaire, measures of tinnitus, and counseling to determine how to manage your condition.  Objective measures involving auditory matching of the tinnitus pitch and loudness will be performed. Masking techniques (i.e., attempting to cover your tinnitus with other sounds) will be used to determine if sound therapy is an option for reducing tinnitus awareness and disturbance.

Comprehensive Hearing Test

If you have not undergone a comprehensive hearing test within the last six months, you will undergo an updated hearing test, which includes the measurement of ultra-high frequency hearing thresholds.

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Tinnitus Education and Counseling

We work closely with you to explain the causes and effects of tinnitus, and what you need to do to prevent and minimize it. 

Hearing Aids

May be recommended if you experience hearing loss along with tinnitus. Hearing aids with a tinnitus feature are combination devices that help improve your ability to hear while also reducing tinnitus.

Alternative Therapies

We may recommend you seek a medical evaluation with a specialist, pursue psychological management including cognitive behavioral therapy, or consider alternative therapies offered by the Duke Integrative Medicine to help you manage your tinnitus.

Consistently Ranked Among the Nation’s Best Hospitals
In addition, Duke University Hospital is proud to be named the best hospital in North Carolina, and nationally ranked in 10 adult and 9 pediatric specialties by U.S. News & World Report for 2019–2020.
Reviewed: 02/08/2018