DECEMBER 1997
Spreading the Word About Tinnitus

THE TINNITUS Action (TA) group has been launched to pursue the relief and ultimate cure of one of the world's most baffling medical conditions. TA hopes to create a link between people suffering from head noises, their medical careers and researchers in every continent.

By mobilising the world's resources, it is hoped a cure to the debilitating condition will be found. Where statistics have been compiled, including the United Kingdom and the United States, it is known that every tenth adult endures permanent sounds in the head. Many children are also affected, some from birth.

"It is now clear that millions of people are affected by tinnitus across the world and many have the ailment to a lesser extent," said Mrs Marjorie Hooper, chairman of Tinnitus Action. "It has devastated countless lives and is one of the oldest scourges of humanity. Yet it remains largely neglected. At last it will have a global organisation to fight it."

Britain has had a Tinnitus Society for many years but few other countries have such organisations. TA will provide advice and information for sufferers and will campaign for better public awareness of the medical condition by alerting governments to its seriousness.

It will also spotlight the growth of noise pollution, one of the modern causes of tinnitus. One main target will be extremely loud pop music that is now condemning youngsters in numerous countries to a lifetime of unwanted sounds in their heads. Initially, TA will target communities in Asia, Africa, South America and parts of Europe, encouraging representatives there to establish national branches.

The TA's Secretariat will offer regular postal advice and information to individual sufferers or their friends and families throughout the world. For the moment this is in English but there are plans to provide a multi-lingual service. Researchers, doctors and other medical staff can also use the service, either to supplement their own knowledge of their subject or make their own ideas and experience known worldwide. Sufferers will also be able to contact each other via a quarterly journal called SoundSense.

Michael O'Toole, Tinnitus Action, PO Box 14904, London, United Kingdom, SE18 3ZX. Telephone: +44 181 317 8934. Fax: +44 181 317 8934.

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