New findings in a retrospective study on the efficacy of precision sound therapy of 156 tinnitus: "Drift" of tinnitus sites

Piao Xu, Qiongping Lin, Dafei Li, Jingya Yang, Haiyan Zhao, Shanshan Zhang, Guangyong Tian
Clinical Otolaryngology 2020 August 3
The purpose of this study was to explore the role of the newly emerging concept that involves "shifting" the tinnitus pitch and loudness in relation to the efficacy of precision sound therapy. This study is the first to investigate the effects of different pitch and loudness levels on the "shift" in tinnitus pitch and on the outcomes of precision sound therapy used to treat displaced tinnitus. We administered them therapy with 3 custom-sound music clips in which the main frequency masked the tinnitus frequency and retested them at several follow-up time points. We uncovered that precision sound therapy was beneficial in treating tinnitus. Effectiveness of long-term sound therapy was evaluated using the Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (THI) at the presound therapy assessment as well as at follow-up visits held at 1, 3months. It facilitates a new understanding and provides new insights on normal hearing and the associated altered tinnitus pitch and, therefore, may introduce a new approach for the treatment of tinnitus. These results should be interpreted with caution due to the preliminary nature of this study. Further studies should be conducted to explore more convincing benefits derived from this intervention for chronic tinnitus and the associated influencing factors using systematic approaches, such as randomised controlled trials, and comparison of tinnitus participants with varying degrees of hearing loss.

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