Doctors' discovery could prevent hearing loss

June 27, 2008 1:45:15 PM PDT
A major discovery by doctors in Oklahoma could help prevent hearing loss caused by exposure to loud noises. Researchers have developed a new drug to stop the cells within the ear from dying when loud noises cause trauma. Researchers tested it on chinchillas because they hear the same sound frequency range as humans.

Researchers say the drug works -- as long as it is taken no more than four hours after the trauma. They hope to begin clinical trials on people within a year.