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20.11.2014

Tinnitus treatment future, whistling in ear when listening to music - Within Minutes

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According to the American Tinnitus Association (ATA), as many as 50 million people suffer from this condition. The answer to helping sufferers of tinnitus lies in device circuitry that is capable of emitting signals or waves that effectively cancel out those that the sounds occurring inside the ear. Researchers believe they may have found a new form of treatment for tinnitus after demonstrating that the delivery of electromagnetic pulses can improve the symptom's severity in a new study. Tinnitus can be caused by a variety of different conditions, including age-related hearing loss, circulatory system problems and build-up of earwax. Current forms of treatment for tinnitus include noise suppression, medications to alleviate the symptom's severity and targeting underlying health conditions that may be behind the problem.
Of those who experience chronic tinnitus, around 20% report that their problem is "clinically significant," negatively affecting their quality of life.
Previous studies have indicated that people with tinnitus have increased activity in the auditory cortex region of the brain compared with people unaffected by the symptom.
The treatment was administered in the form of 2,000 pulses per session over the duration of 10 consecutive work days.


Patients receiving active rTMS experienced a 31% reduction in their tinnitus at the 26th week after treatment compared with their tinnitus at the start of the study. A total of 56% of participants in the active rTMS group (18 out of 32) responded to the treatment, in comparison with 22% of the placebo group (7 out of 32).
Also of interest is whether reducing the intensity of the placebo rTMS will reduce the number of patients who respond to the treatment.
Somewhat surprisingly, a study published last year found that women who consume more caffeine are less likely to have tinnitus.
Due to its disruptive characteristics, many scientists have researched potential new forms of treatment for tinnitus for decades.
Low-frequency rTMS is known to reduce brain activity in targeted regions and, as a result, has been proposed as a potential method of treatment for tinnitus.
Folmer - of the Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Oregon Health & Science University, Portland - and colleagues randomly assigned 70 patients with tinnitus to receive either active or placebo rTMS.
The researchers conducted follow-up assessments after 1, 2, 4, 13 and 26 weeks from the final rTMS treatment session, with tinnitus severity measured using the Tinnitus Functional Index (TFI).


They intend to expand the trial to address further questions such as whether the improvements to tinnitus last for 12 months or longer, what number of rTMS sessions are optimal and what factors influence whether the treatment is effective or not. The researchers state that as seven patients receiving placebo treatment experienced improvement in their tinnitus, it is possible the treatment was not a completely inert placebo. As of 2011, this kind of treatment is far reaching, both because of the emerging effectiveness of the technology and the preparedness of a large portion of hearing care professionals. However, with the right technology and a highly qualified professional, there is hope through progressive audiologic tinnitus management (PATM). DNR is already present in advanced earpieces, and while it has not been perfected it can give hope to the 50 million suffering from tinnitus that their quality of life can be improved through digital hearing instruments.



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