To evaluate the reliability, dimensionality, predictive validity, construct validity, and sensitivity to change of the THI-12 total and sub-scales as diagnostic aids to describe and quantify tinnitus-evoked reactions and evaluate treatment efficacy.
Explorative analysis of the German tinnitus handicap inventory (THI-12) to assess potential sensitivity to tinnitus therapy in placebo-controlled randomized studies. Correlation analysis, including Cronbach's coefficient α and explorative common factor analysis (EFA), was conducted within and between assessments to demonstrate the construct validity, dimensionality, and factorial structure of the THI-12.
N = 618 patients suffering from subjective tinnitus who were to be screened to participate in a randomized, placebo-controlled, 16-week, longitudinal study.
The THI-12 can reliably diagnose tinnitus-related impairments and disabilities and assess changes over time. The test-retest coefficient for neighboured visits was r > 0.69, the internal consistency of the THI-12 total score was α ≤ 0.79 and α ≤ 0.89 at subsequent visits. Predictability of THI-12 total score and overall variance increased with successive measurements. The three-factorial structure allowed for evaluation of factors that affect aspects of patients' health-related quality of life.
The THI-12, with its three-factorial structure, is a simple, reliable, and valid instrument for the diagnosis and assessment of tinnitus and associated impairment over time.