Mercy’s Dr. Kathryn Boling Discusses Causes of Tinnitus and the Treatments Available

January 6, 2015
Lutherville Personal Physicians

A variety of things can cause tinnitus, which is ringing in the ears that won't go away, but there are ways to treat it. Tinnitus can range from a very soft sound that you only hear when it's quiet at night to a loud, annoying shriek that can interfere with daily life.

According to Mercy’s Dr. Kathryn Boling of Lutherville Personal Physicians, tinnitus occurs when tiny hairs in the inner ear are damaged. There are a number of reasons why this can occur.

"Exposure to loud noise can cause tinnitus. Certain viruses can cause tinnitus. Medications can cause tinnitus. There are possibly causes of tinnitus that we don't understand yet," Dr. Boling said. "There are theories that tinnitus can be caused by changes in hormones, so women around menopause, pregnancy or even puberty may be more at risk of developing tinnitus."

Treatment for tinnitus can include medication, as well as devices to suppress the noise.


Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874, Mercy Medical Center is a university-affiliated medical facility named one of the top 100 hospitals in the U.S. by Thomson-Reuters with a national reputation for women’s health. Mercy is home to the nationally acclaimed Weinberg Center for Women’s Health and Medicine as well as the $400+ million, 20-story Mary Catherine Bunting Center. For more information visit Mercy online at, Facebook, Twitter or call 1-800-MD-MERCY.

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