UB studies implantable device as way to treat ringing in the ears - The Buffalo News
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UB studies implantable device as way to treat ringing in the ears

The University at Buffalo is participating in a study of an implantable device that helps retrain the part of the brain involved in hearing.

Researchers are searching for a new treatment for tinnitus, a condition that causes ringing in the ears.

UB is one of four institutions implanting the experimental device. The study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, is being done through a cooperative agreement with MicroTransponder Inc., a Dallas-based medical device company.

Tinnitus affects about 10 million Americans and is a major disability of veterans.

The UB part of the trial is being conducted through the Speech-Language and Hearing Clinic in the Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences.

UB is recruiting 10 volunteers for the study.

Interested individuals must have had tinnitus for at least one year and must meet other criteria.

Those selected for the study will undergo an outpatient surgical procedure in which an electrode will be placed on the vagus nerve in the neck with a lead to a processor about the size of a cardiac pacemaker implanted in the upper chest. The device uses vagus nerve stimulation and sound to retrain the auditory brain.

Email buffalo.tinnitus@gmail.com to learn more about eligibility requirements.

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