Inhibiting Tinnitus with a Computer-Based Audiological Approach
The Hearing Journal®
While 10 percent of the United States population has tinnitus, current treatments for the condition lack a standardized methodology (J Eval Clin Pract 2012;18:326-334; tinnitus prevalence data from the Better Hearing Institute, University of Iowa, and American Tinnitus Association.) In addition, the cost in time and money of current tinnitus therapies is no small m a t t e r ( J A m A c a d A u d 2012;23:126-138). Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT) depends on sound therapy. Treatment
... py. Treatment success is determined by standardized questionnaires, such as the Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (THI), with three months elapsing between baseline and the first treatment probe. In comparison, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) depends on the same procedures but claims to be a superior treatment, with little hard evidence to substantiate that assertion ( Lancet 2012;379:1951-1959). Iconic memory studies reveal cognitive loss with the passage of time between stimulus presentation and subsequent recall of the stimulus content (Perception & Psychophysics 1974;16:575-596). This article discusses an approach to tinnitus diagnosis and treatment that can be delivered over the Internet to a number of devices, including the iPad and the Samsung Android. The patient can access the program at will, and progress is displayed as an ongoing, hard-data baseline. TRT: NOT AN AUDIOLOGICAL APPROACH Philosophically, it's our view that tinnitus retraining therapy is not an audiological paradigm. Audiology has its roots deeply attached to psychophysics and psychoacoustics. It appears incongruous that we have not sought a solution to the problems of tinnitus by adding a paradigm that applies immediate repeatability, reliability (accuracy), and validity (results intended). © iStock/Stockphoto4u Figure 1. This graph shows changes in tinnitus aggravation level across baseline (BSLN), sham trial (SHAM), establishment of parathreshold parameters (EPP), heterodyning (HET), and residual habituation (RH).