Surgery for Pulsatile Tinnitus

For patients with pulsatile tinnitus caused by venous sinus stenosis (narrowing of veins in the brain), the FDA and the Weill Cornell Institutional Review Board approved a clinical trial that showed promising results with venous sinus stenting. This minimally invasive surgery, which involves inserting a stent in the narrowed vein, can restore healthy blood flow and reduce or eliminate the pulsatile tinnitus.

In the stenting process, with the patient under general anesthesia, a soft, tiny catheter is inserted into the femoral vein located in the upper part of the leg, then threaded to the affected vein in the brain. Once the catheter is in position, a self-expanding stent is inserted into the catheter and deployed into the narrowed segment of the vein, relieving the stenosis. The patient is typically discharged from the hospital within 24 to 48 hours.

A stent is placed to restore blood flow through narrowed vein.

When pulsatile tinnitus is caused by venous sinus stenosis (left), opening up the narrowed vein with a mesh stent (right) may be a cure.

Our Care Team

  • Assistant Professor of Radiology in Neurological Surgery (Manhattan and Queens)
Phone: 212-746-2821 (Manhattan) or 718-303-3739 (Queens)
  • Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery (Brooklyn and Manhattan)
Phone: 212-746-2821 (Manhattan); 718-780-3070 (Brooklyn)

Reviewed by: Srikanth Boddu, MD, MSc
Last reviewed/updated: September 2023

Weill Cornell Medicine Neurological Surgery 525 East 68 Street, Box 99 New York, NY 10065 Phone: 866-426-7787