An article in the latest edition of the British Medical Journal suggests that the use of new titanium driver golf clubs can cause temporary or permanent loss of hearing.
This remarkable claim that the new style driver golf clubs which have become a very popular piece of golf equipment for both amateurs and golf professionals alike, was made by a team of authors including Dr Malcolm Buchanan, an Edinburgh ear, nose and throat specialist and keen golfer.
It follows the case of a 55 year-old golfer whose hearing has been damaged, experts believe, by continual use of a titanium driver three times a week over a period of 18 months.
The Dail Mail reports “doctors at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital conducted tests after the 55-year-old golfer attended their clinic with unexplained tinnitus and reduced hearing in his right ear.”
The man had not suffered from any previous hearing problems.
The golfer in question suggested hitting a ball from the tee sounded like a gun shot and he has since discarded the club.
For research purposes a professional golfer was employed to hit shots with six titanium golf clubs from manufacturers including Callaway, Ping, Nike, Mizuno and King Cobra. All produced much louder sounds than the stainless steel headed golf drivers that were also tested.
The loudest titanium club to be tested was the Ping G10.
Dr Buchanan has recommended the wearing of ear plugs when playing golf with these loud golf clubs. But the Daily Mail quotes Andrew Coltart, a professional golfer, as saying ‘If you are wearing earplugs you might not hear shouts of “fore”, be hit by a ball on the head and get brain damage.’
It won’t be long before someone buys you expensive earplugs adorning Callaway or Nike as a Christmas present!