The influence of voluntary muscle contractions upon the onset and modulation of tinnitus

Audiol Neurootol. 2002 Nov-Dec;7(6):370-5. doi: 10.1159/000066155.


Objective: To evaluate the frequency of tinnitus onset (in normal subjects) and modulation (in tinnitus patients) during muscle contractions, estimating possible risk factors.

Material and method: This case-control study enrolled 121 tinnitus patients and 100 healthy volunteers who underwent medical history, ENT examination and 16 maneuvers of muscular contraction (head, neck and limbs). Modulation data were compared between patients with and without normal audiometry, well-defined diagnosis and symptoms of craniomandibular disorders.

Results: The ability to modulate tinnitus (65.3%) was significantly higher than that to originate tinnitus (14.0%). The head and neck musculature was significantly more efficient than that of the limbs. Audiometric pattern, well-defined etiology and symptoms of craniomandibular disorders showed no relation to tinnitus modulation.

Conclusions: Somatic modulation is a characteristic aspect of tinnitus.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Auditory Pathways / physiopathology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Craniomandibular Disorders / complications
  • Craniomandibular Disorders / diagnosis
  • Craniomandibular Disorders / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiopathology*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Tinnitus / complications
  • Tinnitus / diagnosis*
  • Tinnitus / physiopathology*