Tinnitus is a common medical symptom that can be debilitating. Risk factors include hearing loss, ototoxic medication, head injury, and depression. At presentation, the possibilities of otological disease, anxiety, and depression should be considered. No effective drug treatments are available, although much research is underway into mechanisms and possible treatments. Surgical intervention for any otological pathology associated with tinnitus might be effective for that condition, but the tinnitus can persist. Available treatments include hearing aids when hearing loss is identified (even mild or unilateral), wide-band sound therapy, and counselling. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is indicated for some patients, but availability of tinnitus-specific CBT in the UK is poor. The evidence base is strongest for a combination of sound therapy and CBT-based counselling, although clinical trials are constrained by the heterogeneity of patients with tinnitus.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Introduction. Comorbid psychiatric disorders are frequent among patients affected by tinnitus. There are mutual clinical influences between tinnitus and psychiatric disorders, as well as neurobiological relations based on partially overlapping hodological and neuroplastic phenomena. The aim of the present paper is to review the evidence of alterations in brain networks underlying tinnitus physiopathology and to discuss them in light of the current knowledge of the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders. Methods. Relevant literature was identified through a search on Medline and PubMed; search terms included tinnitus, brain, plasticity, cortex, network, and pathways. Results. Tinnitus phenomenon results from systemic-neurootological triggers followed by neuronal remapping within several auditory and nonauditory pathways. Plastic reorganization and white matter alterations within limbic system, arcuate fasciculus, insula, salience network, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, auditory pathways, ffrontocortical, and thalamocortical
networks are discussed. Discussion. Several overlapping brain network alterations do exist between tinnitus and psychiatric disorders. Tinnitus, initially related to a clinicoanatomical approach based on a cortical localizationism, could be better explained by an holistic or associationist approach considering psychic functions and tinnitus as emergent properties of partially overlapping large-scale neural networks.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective: Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) uncovers correlated activity between spatially distinct functionally related brain regions and offers clues about the integrity of functional brain circuits in people with chronic subjective tinnitus. We chose to investigate auditory network connectivity, adopting and extending previously used analyses methods to provide an independent evaluation of replicability. Design: Independent components analysis (ICA) was used to identify coherent patterns arising from spontaneous brain signals within the resting-state data. The auditory network component was extracted and evaluated. Bivariate and partial correlation analyses were performed on pre-defined regions of bilateral auditory cortex to assess functional connectivity. Study sample: Our design carefully matched participant groups for possible confounds, such as hearing status. Twelve patients (seven male, five female; mean age 66 years) all with chronic constant tinnitus and eleven controls (eight male, three female; mean age 68 years) took part. Results: No significant differences were found in auditory network connectivity between groups after correcting for multiple statistical comparisons in the analysis. This contradicts previous findings reporting reduced auditory network connectivity; albeit at a less stringent statistical threshold. Conclusions: Auditory network connectivity does not appear to be reliably altered by the experience of chronic subjective tinnitus.
International journal of audiology 11/2013; 53(3). DOI:10.3109/14992027.2013.846482 · 1.84 Impact Factor
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