Subjective tinnitus is the perception of sound without the presence of an external source. Increasing evidence suggests that tinnitus is associated with inflammation. In this systematic review, the role of inflammation in subjective tinnitus was studied. Nine animal and twenty human studies reporting inflammatory markers in both humans and animals with tinnitus were included. It was established that TNF-α and IL-1β are increased in tinnitus, and that microglia and astrocytes are activated as well. Moreover, platelet activation may also play a role in tinnitus. In addition, we elaborate on mechanisms of inflammation in tinnitus, and discuss potential treatment options targeting inflammatory pathways.