Health Technologies

Tinnitus app helps two-thirds of patients

The debilitating impact of tinnitus can be effectively reduced in just weeks by a training course and sound therapy delivered via a smartphone app, new international research has revealed.

The team from Australian, New Zealand, French and Belgian universities reported the findings in

MindEar aims to help people to practice focus through a training programme, equipping the mind and body to suppress stress hormones and responses and thus reducing the brain’s focus on tinnitus.

Professor Suzanne Purdy is Professor of Psychology at Waipapa Taumata Rau, University of Auckland.

The researcher said:  “MindEar uses a combination of cognitive behavioural therapy, mindfulness and relaxation exercises as well as sound therapy to help you train your brain’s reaction so that we can tune out tinnitus.

“The sound you perceive fades in the background and is much less bothersome.”

The initial trial worked with 30 sufferers, of whom almost two thirds experienced a ‘clinically significant improvement’ in symptoms.

The team is now planning larger trials in the UK in collaboration with the University College London Hospital.

Dr Bardy said: “In our trial, two thirds of users of our chatbot saw improvement after 16 weeks.

“This was shortened to only 8 weeks when patients additionally had access to an online psychologist.”



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