Turn down that radio! Years of loud noise may lead to tumor

om loud noise had about the same risk of developing acoustic neuroma as people who were not exposed to loud noise. People who protected their hearing were also half as likely to develop acoustic neuroma as people who didn't wear ear protection.

The tumor is fairly rare, accounting for only about 6 to 10 percent of tumors that develop inside the skull. Depending on the population, anywhere from one to 20 people per 100,000 develop acoustic neuroma each year. The people with the tumor in this study had the most common type unilateral acoustic neuroma. About 95 percent of all cases of acoustic neuroma affect only one ear. The other kind, bilateral acoustic neuroma, is inherited and affects both ears.

If the tumor is caught early enough through a thorough examination and hearing tests, a physician may be able to surgically remove it. But as the tumor grows larger, it may become attached to the nerves that control facial movement, balance and hearing, making it far more difficult to remove the entire tumor.

Edwards and Schwartzbaum conducted the study with researchers from the Institute of Environmental Medicine of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden.



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