Is Tinnitus A Side-Effect Of COVID-19? What To Do If You See An Increase In Tinnitus-Related Complaints

06/08/2021 | Physician Resources

Since the pandemic struck back in 2020, you may have noticed an increase in people coming to your clinic with tinnitus-related issues, such as ringing and buzzing in the ears.

We certainly have.

So, is it a side-effect of COVID-19?

Let’s look at the facts.

Firstly, research has shown that for those who have contracted COVID-19, about 15% reported tinnitus as a symptom.

In addition, there has been emerging data showing some findings of tinnitus as a side effect of the COVID-19 vaccine, however, more research is needed as this is currently based on patient reports.

Another reason for the rise in tinnitus complaints has been the increased levels of stress and anxiety that the pandemic has brought.

Though many people who have tinnitus (and who have been living with it for some time) can easily get on with their life without suffering from tinnitus symptoms too much, it’s true that an increase in their stress levels can have a dramatic impact, causing their tinnitus to worsen.

With many people suffering a loss of income, the pressures of home-schooling, working from home, isolation, and social anxiety, among many other changes we’ve had to endure during this time, it’s apparent that this has affected the bothersome tinnitus symptoms too, which increases stress levels further.

What Are We Doing With This Information?

When it became apparent that tinnitus could be linked to the effects of COVID-19, we wanted to act fast, which meant being on the ball with the data.

Now, for any patient reporting new or emerging tinnitus, we are currently asking during our initial visit if they have had COVID-19 and, if they have, did their tinnitus begin before or after their diagnosis.

In addition, we’re also asking if they have been vaccinated and whether their tinnitus begins before or after being vaccinated.

This helps us keep a record so we can identify patterns or anomalies, which can help us better help you!

Do You Have Patients Complaining About Tinnitus Symptoms?

If you have noticed an increase in patients complaining about sensations of ringing, buzzing, hissing, or whooshing in their ears, then we can help.

Our Tinnitus Consultations are a great place to start, followed by our Tinnitus Assessments, as both combined will give them ‘there and then’ clarity on whether they have tinnitus or not, and if so if it’s an indicator of a larger hearing loss problem (which is always best found early).

In addition to this, they can complete several different sleep, anxiety, and hearing inventories that help pinpoint which areas contribute to their tinnitus symptoms, such as stress, sleep deprivation, and isolation, after which a tinnitus plan is established.

We then work closely with them to systematically implement this plan to begin getting some relief as their tinnitus perception lessens.

How Much Does It Cost?

The initial tinnitus consultation costs $370 (prices vary for patients with Medicaid-based insurance plans) and consists of two appointments, an initial hour and a half consultation followed by 45-minute telehealth or in-person visit.

The diagnostic portion of this appointment is covered, but the cost of the office visit is not covered by insurance.

If you would like more information or to schedule an appointment for a tinnitus consultation, please call 508-674-3334.

Zoom and in-person consultations for you and your staff for more information are also available by emailing Dr. Duncan at

Do you know somebody that needs to see this? Why not share it?

Nancy Duncan, Au.D.

Dr. Nancy Duncan graduated from Somerset High, Somerset, MA in 1991 and received her B.S. in communication disorders and psychology from Worcester State College. Her master of science in audiology was awarded at the University of Arkansas in 1997, after which she worked for several private audiology practices in Arkansas, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts. Returning to the area in 2003, Dr. Duncan founded Duncan Hearing Healthcare, allowing her to apply her passion to her community through rehabilitative audiology and individual patient care. She earned her clinical doctorate in audiology degree from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry (now Salus University) in 2005. Her passion for her family and community is an integral part of what drives her to provide trustworthy, professional hearing healthcare to her patients.

    Request a Callback

    Would you like to speak to one of our hearing care professionals to discuss your hearing health challenges? Then simply complete this form and we’ll call you back.



    Fall River






    Patient Care Coordinator Required to Join Winning Team

    Duncan Hearing Healthcare is in search of a Patient Care Coordinator to join our amazing team in Fall River, Massachusetts. It’s an opportunity to be part of a nationally respected team of passionate people who have built a stellar reputation as the most caring, trustworthy, and experienced hearing care experts in Massachusetts.

    We’re now seeking someone that wants to join our work family, show us the commitment that we’ll show them and be part of shaping our future, as one of our patient care coordinators.

    To join our team, we care much more about you, your personality, and your career ambitions. From our experience, a great patient care coordinator cares more about people than anything else, they feel a duty to help others, and they’re often willing to go far beyond normal expectations to delight their patients.

    If this is how your co-workers and friends would describe you, we’d like to meet you:

    • Positive attitude, always a pleasure to be around, great sense of humor
    • Friendly, warm, a people person – and comes across the very first time you meet someone, even on the telephone
    • Patient, compassionate, helpful especially with older people. Even temperament, calm, always pleasant, unflappable. Has a knack for being able to turn a frown into a smile
    • Committed, dedicated, a great teammate, pitches in without being asked, puts team accomplishments ahead of individual accomplishments
    • Accurate, detailed, gets things right, double checks their own work, makes very few mistakes
    • Owns it: accepts responsibility, credits others for successes and accepts responsibility for failures. Always finds a constructive way to solve a problem
    • Coachable, doesn’t get defensive, accepts feedback with a positive attitude. Always looking for ways to grow and improve
    • Reliable, dependable, doesn’t just arrive on time: often comes in a little early to make sure they’re prepared for the day; willing to stay late when there’s work that needs to be done

    These statements also describe the people you’ll be working with in our office. It’s the kind of culture we’ve developed, and we’re absolutely committed to maintaining that culture.

    The person we hire has to be a great fit, and we’re prepared to wait until the perfect match comes along.

    This isn’t just a job: it’s a commitment to a team, serving a real purpose, helping people stay connected with their loved ones and enjoy life.

    If that appeals to you, and the above description made you say “Hey! That’s me!”, then we’d love to talk. We want to see your resume, so send that along! We are so excited to find the right fit for this position!
    Job Type: Full-time, 9-5, M-F, Competitive base salary (depending on experience) plus Commissions/Bonuses, Benefits including 401k available, paid holidays off, PTO included

    Experience required in the following areas:

    • Excellent customer service experience is essential!
    • Insurance verification experience is beneficial