The tinnitus assessment is for patients who experience tinnitus and find it to be very bothersome or debilitating. This includes patients with and without suspected hearing loss. The tinnitus assessment is composed of three main sections: hearing evaluation, tinnitus evaluation, and review of results and discussion of treatment strategies. Prior to the appointment, a packet will be mailed to the patient that includes a patient history form, and a questionnaire about the tinnitus. The patient should complete these forms and bring them to the appointment.
The assessment begins with a behavioral audiologic evaluation, which can include tympanometry and otoacoustic emissions testing. The purpose of this is to assess the patient’s hearing status and determine if the presence of hearing loss may be contributing to the tinnitus.
The second part of the assessment will quantify the tinnitus by measuring the pitch and loudness of the tinnitus. The patient will be asked to listen to different pitches of sound and determine which pitch most closely resembles their tinnitus. The patient will also be asked to detect soft sounds, and to determine if certain sounds reduce or eliminate the tinnitus. The evaluation also involves the measurement of the patient’s tolerance to loud sounds. This information can help determine candidacy for tinnitus treatment. For more information on Neuromonics Tinnitus Treatment, visit our tinnitus treatment link under “Treatment and Services”.
The last section of the appointment is dedicated to counseling the patient on the origins of tinnitus, and possible treatments and/or strategies to make the tinnitus less bothersome. These treatment recommendations can include the Neurmonics Tinnitus Treatment, a hearing aid assessment for patients with hearing loss who are hearing aid candidates, and the use of sound generators to help cover up the tinnitus. Patients who are candidates for the Neuromonics treatment will have the ability to listen to the device during the appointment. Lastly, the audiologist will discuss several strategies that the patient can employ to help the tinnitus become less bothersome. These include changes in diet, environment modifications, and relaxation techniques.