Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT) is, nowadays, one of the most extended treatments for tinnitus control. The goal is the habituation to a nonsignificative signal, that is, tinnitus, first, eliminating its reaction and, second, minimizing its perception.
The objective of this study is to identify the factors that could improve or reduce the efficacy of TRT.
A prospective nonrandomized clinical assay (n = 137) was conducted. Three parameters were considered for tinnitus evaluation at 1-year follow-up: patient self-evaluation, visual analogue scale for intensity, and Tinnitus Handicap Inventory.
Tinnitus retraining therapy group improved at 1-year follow-up, considering the 3 parameters. The most important factor of failure to TRT efficacy has been the refuse to instrumentation when it was required, according to TRT recommendations. Tinnitus Handicap Inventory score in this group did not show any improvement (P = .009). Highest scores of tinnitus intensity (visual analogue scale) and handicap (Tinnitus Handicap Inventory) before treatment as well as the most disabled diagnosis (sudden deafness and Meniere's disease) had better response to TRT. Jastreboff's treatment categories, longer presence of tinnitus, existence of hyperacusis or hearing loss, type of prosthesis used, duration of the treatment, and index of assistance to our follow-up program were not related to the effectiveness of TRT.
Tinnitus retraining therapy has demonstrated to be an effective treatment of tinnitus. More severe tinnitus are susceptible to get better response with this approach. Instrumentation, when recommended, is mandatory to obtain a higher relief of this symptom (EMB rating: B-2).