New center established in New Zealand to study hearing loss, balance disorders and their associated consequences


Professor Peter Thorne from the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences is leading a team of New Zealand scientists and clinicians working on hearing loss and balance disorders at the newly established Eisdell Moore Centre at the university.

The Eisdell Moore Centre is being set up as a virtual center and will bring together teams from Auckland, Canterbury and Otago universities, under Thorne’s leadership. A specific focus of the center will be to look into the many unanswered questions about the possible links between the disorders of interest.

“New Zealand has internationally recognised scientists researching these fields and we hope the centre will be able to harness this talent to help people,” Thorne indicated to the New Zealand Herald, a leading daily newspaper in the country. “We also want to involve people from the community like hearing and balance disorder support groups.” The team hopes to help in reducing isolation and other disorders related to hearing loss and balance problems that can have a significant impact on overall health.

Thorne explains that evidence appears to indicate the brain can become overwhelmed by years of straining to hear in people who have untreated hearing loss. It is thought that this could make affected individuals more susceptible to dementia, possible acting in association with another known and commonly occurring factor promoting dementia, social isolation.