29 Jan /14


The first time the word tinnitus appears in English in an anonymous translation of the work Lexicon medicum graeco-latinum by the Dutch physician Steven Blankaart with the quaint English title · A physical dictionary; in which, all the terms relating either to anatomy, chirurgery, pharmacy or chemistry are very accurately explained which was published in 1684. Not surprisingly the Latin term, tinnitus, which means ringing is retained. In the English translation, tinnitus is defined as “a certain buzzing or tingling in the ears”.

But it was only in 1843 that the Irish doctor Robert Graves used the word tinnitus in the context of medical treatment in the British system. In his A System of Clinical Medicine he recorded the first case of a patient who “on admission complained of headache, tinnitus aurium”. This ringing sound occurs without there being an outside audible stimulation.

Even though tinnitus affects almost one in eight of all people, there is still no medication for the problem. Talk therapy is an option. Fortunately, tinnitus presents a severe problem to a much smaller group.

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