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Tinnitus and its relationship with muscle tenderness in patients with headache and facial pain

  • M Pezzoli (a1), A Ugolini (a2), E Rota (a2), L Ferrero (a2), C Milani (a2), L Pezzoli (a3), G Pecorari (a1) and F Mongini (a2)...



This study aimed to examine tinnitus prevalence in patients with different types of headache and the relationship between tinnitus and the pericranial muscle tenderness and cervical muscle tenderness scores.


A cross-sectional study was conducted of 1251 patients with migraine and/or myogenous pain, arthrogenous temporomandibular joint disorders and tension-type headache. Standardised palpation of the pericranial and cervical muscles was carried out and univariable and multivariable analysis was used to measure the odds ratio of suffering tinnitus by the different diagnoses and muscular tenderness grade.


A univariable analysis showed that myogenous pain, pericranial muscle tenderness and cervical muscle tenderness scores, sex, and age were associated with tinnitus. When a multivariable model including only age, sex and a headache diagnosis was used, myogenous pain, migraine and age were found to be associated with tinnitus. When muscle tenderness scores were also included, only the cervical muscle tenderness and pericranial muscle tenderness scores were found to be significantly associated with tinnitus.


In a population of patients with headache and craniofacial pain, tinnitus was related to increased cervical muscle tenderness and pericranial muscle tenderness scores, rather than to any particular form of headache.


Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Dr M Pezzoli, 1st ENT Division, Department of Clinical Physiopathology, University of Turin, Via Genova 3, Torino, Italy Fax: +39 011–5085109 E-mail:


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