Tinnitus Hurts Elderly Quality Of Life

Tinnitus -- annoying, continuous sounds in one or both ears -- often impacts the quality of life of the elderly, a Nigerian researcher says. Study author Akeem Olawale Lasisi says tinnitus is common among elderly Nigerians and he estimates the ear condition affects between 10 percent to more than 30 percent of Nigeria's population, though fewer than 4 percent consult a doctor about it.

Lasisi and colleagues conducted face-to-face interviews of 1,302 elderly people age 65 and older. The researchers found a significant difference in prevalence of tinnitus depending on age. Among young elderly -- those between ages 65-69 -- 6.5 percent reported experiencing the condition, while 41.9 percent of the older group -- those 80 and older -- experienced it.

lso in this study, a non-significant trend was observed for the prevalence of tinnitus to increase with decreasing socioeconomic and educational level. "Our results are of potential value in the overall consideration of the health consequence of aging in this setting, especially given the projections of a rapid increase in the proportion of the elderly in developing countries," Lasisi said in a statement.

The findings are published in Otoloaryngology: Head and Neck Surgery. (c) UPI