HealthDay News — The risk of cochlear disorders, especially tinnitus, is increased among patients with a history of migraine, according to a study published online July 12 in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

Juen-Haur Hwang, MD, PhD, from the Dalin Tzu Chi Hospital in Taiwan, and colleagues used claims data from the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database 2005 to identify 1,056 patients with migraines. Based on propensity score matching, 4,224 controls were identified from the same database. 

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The researchers found that the crude hazard ratio for cochlear disorders was 2.83 (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.01 to 3.99) in the migraine cohort compared with the non-migraine cohort; the adjusted hazard ratio was 2.71 (95% CI, 1.86 to 3.93). For the migraine and non-migraine cohorts, the incidence rates of cochlear disorders were 81.4 and 29.4 per 1 million person-years, respectively. The cumulative incidence of cochlear disorders was significantly higher in the migraine vs the matched non-migraine cohort (12.2 vs 5.5%). In subgroup analysis, the adjusted hazard ratios in the migraine cohort vs the non-migraine cohort were 3.30 (95% CI, 2.17 to 5.00) for tinnitus, 1.03 (95% CI, 0.17 to 6.41) for sensorineural hearing impairment, and 1.22 (95% CI, 0.53 to 2.83) for sudden deafness.

“This finding may support the presence and/or concept of ‘cochlear migraine,'” the authors write.

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