gms | German Medical Science

83rd Annual Meeting of the German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Head and Neck Surgery

German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Head and Neck Surgery

16.05. - 20.05.2012, Mainz

Tinnitus compensation in humans

Meeting Abstract

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German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Head and Neck Surgery. 83rd Annual Meeting of the German Society of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Head and Neck Surgery. Mainz, 16.-20.05.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. Doc12hno47

DOI: 10.3205/12hno47, URN: urn:nbn:de:0183-12hno472

Published: July 23, 2012

© 2012 Pilz et al.
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Outline

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In our industrial society, 35–45% of the population experience tinnitus and, despite various therapeutic options, many patients suffer from tinnitus permanently.

This study is evaluating a new therapeutic method that is based on the application of phase-shifted tone, the phase-shift treatment. The intention is to reduce or eliminate tinnitus by applying a 180° shifted copy of the endogenous sound wave.

72 patients suffering from chronic or subacute tinnitus were administered the phase-shift treatment and 37.5% of those patients showed a reduction of tinnitus. The reduction of tinnitus varied from a decrease in intensity to the total elimination of tinnitus with a mean duration of tinnitus reduction (time from the end of treatment to the initial intensity of tinnitus) of 21.94 days.

This study allows no conclusion concerning the cause of the therapeutic effect. However, there may be an impact on the overactive central regions of the auditory system as well as the inner ear. Individual temporary effects are induced to the inner ear and the central auditory system since the tinnitus reduction continues beyond the treatment itself. The development of a home device could help to compose a more individual therapeutic concept. For patients with tinnitus who showed reduction only during the application of the sound wave, the use of a retroauricular device might be beneficial.