What’s that sound? Some COVID survivors report tinnitus as long-term side effect

News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – As we get the upper hand on COVID-19, doctors worldwide can now concentrate on the long-term side effects.

One of those possible side effects is a lingering and annoying impact on your hearing.

Sherry Petta’s COVID symptoms were fairly mild. But within days, there was one severe symptom.

“I never had a fever. I never had a cough. I never lost my sense of taste and sense of smell,” Petta said. “My whole body is buzzing. I’m buzzing. I feel like I’m electric. My ears are ringing and my whole body is buzzing.

Dr. Michael Kubala is an ear, nose and throat surgeon in north Texas. He has seen plenty of patients with tinnitus related to COVID.

“Some are just mild symptoms. Some are severe enough to produce anxiety, depression, sleep deprivation,” Dr. Kabala said.

In March, the ringing got so paralyzing for Kent Taylor, CEO of the popular restaurant chain Texas Roadhouse. He committed suicide after experiencing “unbearable” post-COVID-19 symptoms.

“Studies show anywhere between 5% to 15% of patients have tinnitus after their infection,” Dr. Kabala said. “Anywhere between 3% to 8% percent will have sudden hearing loss.”

So even though there may be a small number of sufferers nationwide, the impact on their lives is huge.

“I think I got really teared up the first time someone told me ‘get used to it,’” Petta said. “This is crazy, it’s in my head all the time.”

“Unfortunately, there is no magic treatment to get rid of it,” Dr. Kabala said.

It never seems to go away, so doctors suggest masking techniques like white noise, meditation and even counseling.

“Something called cognitive behavioral therapy, which is essentially psychology retraining the brain on how to respond to these noises,” Dr. Kabala said.

For this active wife and mother of two, tinnitus is part of her new normal.

“Sometimes it’s very loud. Sometimes I really don’t notice it,” Petta said. “I believe its always there to some degree.”

If you, or someone you know, is suffering with ringing or hearing loss, doctors urge you to get a hearing test.

Studies are underway across the world on how the virus impacts your audiology, but at this point there is no definitive way to treat it, or that quiet that buzzing in your head.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Business News

More Business News

Political News

More Political News

Technology News

More Technology News

Science News

More Science News

Entertainment News

More Entertainment News

Odd News

More Odd News
COVID-19 risk as determined by nonprofit Covid Act Now.

Coronavirus Resources from the CDC

Coronavirus by State

COVID-19 Testing Vs. Confirmed Cases by State

Interactive: Coronavirus Timeline

Popular

More Home Page Top Stories