lunes, 23 de septiembre de 2013

Acúfenos: Características: "Perceptual Components of Tinnitus Severity "

Perceptual Components of Tinnitus Severity
(Abstract of ARO Meeting Denver, Colorado)
Mary Meikle1, James Henry2, Susan Griest1, Barbara Stewart1

Oregon Health & Science University, 2Portland VA Medical Center, Portland, OR. USA

Most existing questionnaires for assessing the severity and negative impact of tinnitus tend to emphasize functional or emotional effects of tinnitus. 

While such measures are important for diagnostic purposes and as outcome measures, they require time periods of several days to several weeks or longer for observation of meaningful changes following treatment.

More rapid evaluation of treatment outcomes can be obtained using patients' reports of the perceptual characteristics of tinnitus such as its loudness, salience, unpleasantness, intrusiveness, and the percentage of time the tinnitus sensations are perceived. 

However, the extent to which such perceptual attributes of tinnitus are appropriate indicators of the clinical severity of tinnitus has received relatively little systematic attention. 

To maximize measurement sensitivity, we designed a 43-item questionnaire to quantify patients' responses concerning functional, emotional and perceptual aspects of tinnitus, using a 0-10 point response scale for each question. 

A total of 327 subjects with varying levels of tinnitus, recruited from a diverse group of patients attending clinics in three locations (Oregon, Ohio, Florida), responded to the questionnaires before and after receiving treatment. 

As expected, the perceptual attributes listed above were positively related to global measures of tinnitus distress, including (1) a Visual Analog Scale and (2) the question "How much of a problem is your tinnitus?" (response levels: 0=Not a problem; 1=Small problem; 2=Moderate problem; 3=Big problem; 4=Very big problem). 

Effect sizes for the perceptual measures (computed for subjects reporting treatment benefi t) ranged from 0.49- 1.50. 

Additional data will be presented concerning the ability of perceptual measures to serve as reliable, sensitive outcome measures for studies that require rapid evaluation of tinnitus treatments having immediate effects, such as stimulation with electrical, magnetic, or acoustic stimuli. 

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