Evidence for biological markers of tinnitus: A systematic review

Haúla F. Haider, Derek J. Hoare, Sara F. Ribeiro, Diogo Ribeiro, Helena Caria, Nuno Trigueiros, Luís Miguel Borrego, Agnieszka J. Szczepek, Ana Luísa Papoila, Asma Elarbed, Maria da Luz Martins, João Paço, Magdalena Sereda

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Subjective tinnitus is a phantom sound heard only by the affected person and may be a symptom of various diseases. Tinnitus diagnosis and monitoring is based on subjective audiometric and psychometric methods. This review aimed to synthesize evidence for tinnitus presence or its severity. We searched several electronic databases, citation searches of the included primary studies through Web of Science, and further hand searches. At least two authors performed all systematic review steps. Sixty-two records were included and were categorized according the biological variable. Evidence for possible tinnitus biomarkers come from oxidative stress, interleukins, steroids and neurotransmitters categories. We found conflicting evidence for full blood count, vitamins, lipid profile, neurotrophic factors, or inorganic ions. There was no evidence for an association between tinnitus and the remaining categories. The current review evidences that larger studies, with stricter exclusion criteria and powerful harmonized methodological design are needed. Protocol published on PROSPERO (CRD42017070998).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProgress in Brain Research
PublisherElsevier B.V.
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Publication series

NameProgress in Brain Research
ISSN (Print)0079-6123
ISSN (Electronic)1875-7855


  • Biomarker
  • Genetic
  • Inflammation
  • Oxidative stress
  • Tinnitus


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