Published online Aug 28, 2013. doi: 10.5319/wjo.v3.i3.89
Revised: August 8, 2013
Accepted: August 20, 2013
Published online: August 28, 2013
Core tip: Noise exposure, either occupational or recreational, is a major cause of sensorineural hearing loss in the industrialised world. Hearing loss is a devastating disability with considerable social and economic implications. Recent studies have demonstrated that an inflammatory response induced in the cochlea by noise exposure may contribute to the development of noise-induced hearing loss. Better understanding of the underlying inflammatory processes will help define pharmacological interventions that can potentially mitigate noise-induced cochlear inflammation and the associated hearing loss.