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The Effect of Environmental Stressors on Tinnitus: A Prospective Longitudinal Study on the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Sex-Dependent Aggregation of Tinnitus in Swedish Families

Laboratory of Experimental Audiology, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Karolinska Institute, 171 77 Stockholm, Sweden
Department of Mathematics, University of Bergen, 5020 Bergen, Norway
Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University of Regensburg, 93053 Regensburg, Germany
Hörsel och balansmottagningen, Karolinska Universitetssjukhuset, 171 76 Stockholm, Sweden
Decibel Therapeutics Inc., Boston, MA 02215, USA
Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri IRCCS, 20156 Milan, Italy
Otology & Neurotology Group, Department of Genomic Medicine, Pfizer—Universidad de Granada—Junta de Andalucía Centro de Genómica e Investigación Oncológica (GENYO), PTS, Avenida de la Ilustración 114, 18016 Granada, Spain
Department of Otolaryngology, Hospital Universitario Virgen de las Nieves, Instituto de Investigacion Biosanitaria ibs.GRANADA, 18012 Granada, Spain
National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Nottingham Biomedical Research Centre, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Ropewalk House, Nottingham NG1 5DU, UK
Hearing Sciences, Division of Clinical Neuroscience, School of Medicine, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally.
J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9(12), 3812;
Received: 3 October 2020 / Revised: 19 November 2020 / Accepted: 20 November 2020 / Published: 25 November 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Treatments and Diagnosis for Chronic Tinnitus)
Twin and adoption studies point towards a genetic contribution to tinnitus; however, how the genetic risk applies to different forms of tinnitus is poorly understood. Here, we perform a familial aggregation study and determine the relative recurrence risk for tinnitus in siblings (λs). Four different Swedish studies (N = 186,598) were used to estimate the prevalence of self-reported bilateral, unilateral, constant, and severe tinnitus in the general population and we defined whether these 4 different forms of tinnitus segregate in families from the Swedish Tinnitus Outreach Project (STOP, N = 2305). We implemented a percentile bootstrap approach to provide accurate estimates and confidence intervals for λs. We reveal a significant λs for all types of tinnitus, the highest found being 7.27 (95% CI (5.56–9.07)) for severe tinnitus, with a higher susceptibility in women (10.25; 95% CI (7.14–13.61)) than in men (5.03; 95% CI (3.22–7.01)), suggesting that severity may be the most genetically influenced trait in tinnitus in a sex-dependent manner. Our findings strongly support the notion that genetic factors impact on the development of tinnitus, more so for severe tinnitus. These findings highlight the importance of considering tinnitus severity and sex in the design of large genetic studies to optimize diagnostic approaches and ultimately improve therapeutic interventions. View Full-Text
Keywords: tinnitus; familial aggregation; genetic risk; hearing loss; bilateral; unilateral; constant tinnitus; familial aggregation; genetic risk; hearing loss; bilateral; unilateral; constant
MDPI and ACS Style

Trpchevska, N.; Bulla, J.; Prada Hellberg, M.; Edvall, N.K.; Lazar, A.; Mehraei, G.; Uhlen, I.; Schlee, W.; Canlon, B.; Gallus, S.; Lopez-Escamez, J.A.; Cederroth, C.R. Sex-Dependent Aggregation of Tinnitus in Swedish Families. J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9, 3812.

AMA Style

Trpchevska N, Bulla J, Prada Hellberg M, Edvall NK, Lazar A, Mehraei G, Uhlen I, Schlee W, Canlon B, Gallus S, Lopez-Escamez JA, Cederroth CR. Sex-Dependent Aggregation of Tinnitus in Swedish Families. Journal of Clinical Medicine. 2020; 9(12):3812.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Trpchevska, Natalia, Jan Bulla, Matilda Prada Hellberg, Niklas K. Edvall, Andra Lazar, Golbarg Mehraei, Inger Uhlen, Winfried Schlee, Barbara Canlon, Silvano Gallus, Jose A. Lopez-Escamez, and Christopher R. Cederroth. 2020. "Sex-Dependent Aggregation of Tinnitus in Swedish Families" Journal of Clinical Medicine 9, no. 12: 3812.

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