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Neural Plasticity
Volume 2014, Article ID 549162, 10 pages
Research Article

Abnormal Baseline Brain Activity in Patients with Pulsatile Tinnitus: A Resting-State fMRI Study

1Department of Radiology Center, Beijing Tongren Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100730, China
2Department of Radiology Center, Beijing Friendship Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100050, China

Received 17 January 2014; Revised 10 March 2014; Accepted 6 April 2014; Published 24 April 2014

Academic Editor: Tobias Kleinjung

Copyright © 2014 Lv Han et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Numerous investigations studying the brain functional activity of the tinnitus patients have indicated that neurological changes are important findings of this kind of disease. However, the pulsatile tinnitus (PT) patients were excluded in previous studies because of the totally different mechanisms of the two subtype tinnitus. The aim of this study is to investigate whether altered baseline brain activity presents in patients with PT using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) technique. The present study used unilateral PT patients () and age-, sex-, and education-matched normal control subjects () to investigate the changes in structural and amplitude of low-frequency (ALFF) of the brain. Also, we analyzed the relationships between these changes with clinical data of the PT patients. Compared with normal controls, PT patients did not show any structural changes. PT patients showed significant increased ALFF in the bilateral precuneus, and bilateral inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and decreased ALFF in multiple occipital areas. Moreover, the increased THI score and PT duration was correlated with increased ALFF in precuneus and bilateral IFG. The abnormalities of spontaneous brain activity reflected by ALFF measurements in the absence of structural changes may provide insights into the neural reorganization in PT patients.