Clinical Guide for Audiologic Tinnitus Management I Assessment Short Course
Short Course  |   June 2005
Clinical Guide for Audiologic Tinnitus Management I
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • James A. Henry
    VA Medical Center, Portland, OR, and Oregon Health & Science University, Portland
    VA Medical Center (NCRAR), P.O. Box 1034, Portland, OR 97207
  • Tara L. Zaugg
    VA Medical Center (NCRAR), P.O. Box 1034, Portland, OR 97207
  • Martin A. Schechter
    VA Medical Center (NCRAR), P.O. Box 1034, Portland, OR 97207
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: james.henry@med.va.gov
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Research and Technology / Short Courses
Short Course   |   June 2005
Clinical Guide for Audiologic Tinnitus Management I
American Journal of Audiology, June 2005, Vol. 14, 21-48. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2005/004)
History: Received September 1, 2004 , Accepted May 20, 2005
 
American Journal of Audiology, June 2005, Vol. 14, 21-48. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2005/004)
History: Received September 1, 2004; Accepted May 20, 2005

Purpose: This article is the first of 2 that present basic guidelines for audiologists to provide clinical management of tinnitus. The method, termed audiologic tinnitus management (ATM), was developed to incorporate management strategies that can be implemented most efficiently by audiologists.

Method: Development of ATM has been drawn from the clinical and research experience of the authors and numerous audiologists. Certain elements of ATM are adapted from the methods of tinnitus masking and tinnitus retraining therapy. Procedures are described in the present article for performing the intake assessment, while the companion article (J. A. Henry, T. L. Zaugg, & M. A. Schechter, 2005) describes treatment methodology.

Results: Development of ATM has resulted in defined procedures to conduct a basic tinnitus assessment that includes written questionnaires, an intake interview, audiologic evaluation, and a psychoacoustic assessment of tinnitus perceptual characteristics. If patients report a sound tolerance problem (hyperacusis), loudness discomfort levels are measured at audiometric frequencies. There are special procedures for selecting hearing aids, ear-level noise generators, combination devices (noise generator and hearing aid combined), and personal listening devices (i.e., portable radios and tape, CD, and MP3 players).

Conclusions: This article explains each of these assessment components in detail. Adoption of the ATM assessment protocol by audiologists can contribute to the establishment of uniform procedures for the clinical management of tinnitus patients.

Acknowledgments
The authors acknowledge support from the Veterans Health Administration and Veterans Affairs Rehabilitation Research and Development Service (Grants C3214R and C2659C). Development of this protocol is the combined result of information provided by audiologists, clinicians, and researchers who are too numerous to mention. Special thanks go to Harvey Abrams, PhD, Robert Dobie, MD, Marc Fagelson, PhD, Daniel Storzbach, PhD, and Mitchel Turbin, PhD, for their specific contributions.
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