Prescription of hearing-aid output for tinnitus relief.Int J Audiol. 2013 Sep; 52(9):617-25.IJ
Tinnitus is a perceived sound that cannot be attributed to an external source. This study attempts to identify a prescription of amplification that is optimized as a first-fit setting for tinnitus relief.
Participants compared the effect of high frequency amplification on their tinnitus. Stimuli were 13 speech files with different amounts of high frequency amplification (three cut-off frequencies and four gain settings) to simulate the effects of a change in DSL(I/O) v5.0 prescription in the high frequencies.
Twenty-five participants with chronic tinnitus participated in the study.
A 6-dB reduction to prescribed gain at 2 kHz emerged as the most preferred output (26.47% participants) to interfere with participants' tinnitus. Overall, 70.58% of the participants' preferred a 3 to 6 dB reduction in output while 29.42% preferred a similar increase across all cut-off frequencies. A trend was observed in which the higher the tinnitus pitch the more similar the preferred output to DSL(I/O) v5.0.
DSL(I/O) v5.0 appears to be a good starting point for prescription of hearing-aid output for tinnitus management. Long-term benefits of different prescriptions for tinnitus still need to be ascertained.