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ORIGINAL RESEARCH

Investigation of the Effectiveness of Internet-Based Smart Phone Sound Therapy in Tinnitus Treatment
Tinnitus Tedavisinde İnternet Tabanlı Akıllı Telefon Ses Terapisi Uygulamasının Etkinliğinin İncelenmesi
Received Date : 19 Mar 2021
Accepted Date : 08 Jun 2021
Available Online : 14 Jun 2021
Doi: 10.24179/kbbbbc.2021-83210 - Makale Dili: TR
KBB ve BBC Dergisi. 2021;29(3):190-6
Copyright © 2020 by Turkey Association of Society of Ear Nose Throat and Head Neck Surgery. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/)
ABSTRACT
Objective: Tinnitus is the perception of sound without an external audible stimulus. Although different theories have been proposed, the mechanism of its formation has not been fully elucidated. For this reason, there is no standard treatment method. Acoustic masking is one of the recommended treatments. While acoustic masking can be applied with different devices and techniques, it has been stated that internet-based smartphone applications can also be used for this process. For this purpose, we aimed to examine the usability of masking treatment with a smartphone application for tinnitus treatment and the change in patients’ complaints of using this treatment as a result of treatment in our study. Material and Methods: The files of the patients who used smartphone application for tinnitus acoustic masking treatment were retrospectively analyzed between 2018-2020 in Balıkesir University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Ear, Nose and Throat. The Tinnitus Handicap Index (THI) and visual analogue scales (VAS), which were completed before and after treatment, were examined to observe the negative effects of tinnitus on patients. Besides, after the treatment, the opinions of the patients about the treatment were recorded by asking whether they benefited from the treatment or not. Results: Forty-three patients who met inclusion criteria were included in the study. A significant improvement was observed in THI data before and after acoustic masking treatment (p<0.05). Besides, a significant improvement was observed in all parameters compared to before treatment in terms of tinnitus severity, duration- frequency during the day, degree of discomfort, attention deficit, sleep problems, and total symptom scores examined with VAS (p<0.05). When the patients compared who stated that they benefited from the treatment or not, there was no significant difference between the groups in terms of age, gender, total tinnitus duration, presence of hearing loss, tinnitus frequency, and intensity (p>0.05). Conclusion: Masking therapy, which has been shown to be useful for tinnitus treatment in previous studies, has been shown to be a simple, easily accessible, inexpensive, and effective method by using smartphone applications, which can reduce the complaints of tinnitus patients.
ÖZET
Amaç: Tinnitus, dışarıdan bir sesli uyaran olmadan ses algılanmasıdır. Oluşum mekanizması, farklı teoriler öne sürülmüş olsa da tam olarak açıklığa kavuşturulamamıştır. Bu nedenle standart bir tedavi yöntemi de bulunmamaktadır. Akustik maskeleme, önerilen tedavilerden biridir. Farklı cihazlar ve yöntemlerle akustik maskeleme işlemi uygulanabilirken, internet tabanlı akıllı telefon uygulamalarının da bu işlem için kullanılabileceği belirtilmiştir. Bu amaçla çalışmamızda, tinnitus tedavisi için bir akıllı telefon uygulaması ile maskeleme tedavisinin kullanılabilirliğini ve bu tedaviyi kullanan hastaların, tedavi sonucunda şikâyetlerindeki değişimi incelemeyi amaçladık. Gereç ve Yöntemler: Balıkesir Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Kulak Burun Boğaz Kliniğinde, 2018-2020 yılları arasında tinnitus akustik maskeleme tedavisi amacıyla akıllı telefon uygulaması kullanılan hastaların dosyaları retrospektif olarak incelendi. Tinnitusun hastalarda meydana getirdiği olumsuz etkileri görmek amacıyla tedavi öncesi ve sonrası doldurtulan Tinnitus Engellilik Anketi (TEA) ve görsel analog ölçekler= vizüel analog skalalar (VAS) incelendi. Ayrıca tedavi sonrasında hastaların tedavi hakkındaki görüşleri, tedaviden fayda görüp görmediği sorularak kaydedildi. Bulgular: Çalışmaya, dâhil olma kriterlerini karşılayan 43 hasta dâhil edildi. Akustik maskeleme tedavisi öncesi ve sonrası karşılaştırmada, TEA verilerinde anlamlı düzelme izlendi (p<0,05). Ayrıca VAS ile incelenen çınlama şiddeti, gün içindeki süre-sıklığı, rahatsızlık derecesi, dikkat eksikliği, uyku problemleri ve toplam semptom skorlarında tedavi öncesine göre tüm parametrelerde anlamlı düzelme izlendi (p<0,05). Tedaviden fayda gördüğünü ve görmediğini bildiren hastalar karşılaştırıldığında; yaş, cinsiyet, toplam tinnitus süresi, işitme kaybının varlığı, tinnitus frekansı ve şiddeti verilerinde gruplar arasında anlamlı fark izlenmedi (p>0,05). Sonuç: Daha önceki çalışmalarda, tinnitus tedavisi için faydası gösterilmiş olan akustik maskelemenin, akıllı telefon uygulamaları kullanılarak daha basit, kolay ulaşılabilir, ucuz ve etkili bir yöntem olarak tinnitus hastalarının şikâyetlerinde azalma sağlanabildiği gösterilmiştir.
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