Neurofeedback for Tinnitus

Discussion in 'Treatments' started by aurelientt, Mar 15, 2013.

tinnitus forum
    1. aurelientt

      aurelientt Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2013
      Hi everyone,

      I am currently interested in what might be considered an alternative Tinnitus treatment: Neurofeedback. It is interesting because there is actually a neurofeedback center here in Anchorage, AK and I was actually able to find a few research articles which indicated significant improvements. FYI, here are the articles:

      (Neurofeedback for subjective tinnitus patients) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21592701
      (Neurofeedback for treating tinnitus) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17956812
      (Neurofeedback in therapy of tinnitus) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11219406
      (Thalamocortical dysrhythmia) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC24801/
      --I included the final article because it appears to offer an explanation for why neurofeedback may help...

      Edited: Here is the full study on oscillatory brain wave changes from neurofeedback. http://kops.ub.uni-konstanz.de/bits...z:352-opus-45496/dohrmann2007a.pdf?sequence=1

      Does anyone have any familiarity with this form of treatment? Any advice for someone new to T and considering neurofeedback? I am going to call the neurofeedback place tomorrow and continue with more research tonight.

      Brandon
       
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    2. calin
      Inspired

      calin Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Oct 2011
    3. sworthi245
      Balanced

      sworthi245 Member

      Location:
      United States, Northwest Georgia
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/02/12
      Interesting information, which I have read about similar therapies before. I too would be interested in content of therapy and costs.

      This sounds similar to binaural beats, which may be on the forums somewhere. This is a sound therapy that basically attempts to help regulate certain brainwaves with different sound tracks, etc. You can Google it and also find on Wikipedia. Also, lots of tracks on YouTube. Just search binaural beats. Some tracks are free, and help with sleep, euphoria, etc. Considered alternative with not a lot of controlled data available. Non-invasive and could be entertaining at the least.

      Keep us updated! If it works for you, there may be something on the east coast for me.
       
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    4. mick

      mick Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2012
      I've checked around me. Prices range from 100-$175 per 1 hour session. Two of the 5 or six places I found on the web in my city listed tinnitus as one of the things they have treated with biofeedback. I sent e-mails to a couple to find out what there success rate is and how many sessions they recommend. If anyone replies, I'll post the info.
       
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    5. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      I tried both Neuro and Bio feedback. Not much diff between the two. They hook some electrodes to your head and chest and teach you how to breath slowly and relax. That's pretty much about it. I did it for a few weeks and then stopped. Yes, it helped me relax but the quiet environment where it was administered made me hear my T more at the time. So I would say it didn't do anything for me but you might be different.

      I think it is usually covered by insurance so if you can, give it a try. Cannot hurt.
       
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    6. aurelientt

      aurelientt Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2013
      So I spoke with the person at Alaska Neurofeedback. It was an informative conversation. The practitioner here appears to be well-qualified and also has Tinnitus. He apparently wrote his Masters thesis on the origins of Tinnitus. I have a consultation scheduled for this Friday and will post an update then.
       
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    7. jazz
      No Mood

      jazz Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      eardrum rupture from virus; barotrauma from ETD
      Keep us posted! You are fortunate to find someone who wrote his Master's thesis on tinnitus. Did his thesis focus on neurofeedback? You might ask. Anyway, good luck!
       
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    8. calin
      Inspired

      calin Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Oct 2011
      Good question!
       
    9. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      Good luck and yes keep us posted
       
    10. carlover
      English

      carlover Member Benefactor

      Location:
      London
      Tinnitus Since:
      1986
      Hiya Aureientt ,cant help this response :eek: Re read your post and see where this therapy might not actually work;)

      Can you see what I mean ?:cautious:

      All the best buddy,Pete Hope you laugh with me on this dont mean any disrespect.
       
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    11. mick

      mick Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2012
      Like your comment, Pete. I had the same thought since I recently exchanged some e-mails with a neurofeedback practitioner, and he too said he had tinnitus. In my last message to him I asked how successful he was in treating himself. He avoided answering that question. In his defense, he offered a free one hour consultation in his response, so maybe he is saving that story for people who take him up on it. I have a feeling it did not do much for him, otherwise I think he would have mentioned it.

      I'm not trying to discourage anyone from trying neuro/bio feedback. We all know T is a crazy thing, and what is good for the goose, may not be good for the gander; different things work for different people. I may actually take the guy up on his free consultation just find out what his story is. I've got nothing to lose but a little time.
       
    12. aurelientt

      aurelientt Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2013
      LOL. Yes he has Tinnitus. I have to say that he never told me it should be viewed as a cure. Rather as a treatment to lessen its impact.
       
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    13. aurelientt

      aurelientt Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2013
      I met with Kurtis at Alaska Neurofeedback last Friday. The total cost for 20 sessions lasting about 60 minutes each over the course of 10 weeks is $1500. I am not sure if that is standard.
       
    14. mick

      mick Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2012
      Brandon,

      Did you ever follow-up with any neurofeedback sessions?

      Also, I've been curious -- as I remember you thought your T may have been caused by Lexapro. Were you on the brand name drug, or generic? Did you perhaps start with the brand name and later switch to generic, or did you switch from one generic to another (the only two generic manufacturers of escitalopram are Mylan and Teva)? I'm only asking because I had been taking Mylan escitalopram, and then was unknowingly switched to Teva, and my T went wild. I went back to Mylan, and it returned to normal.

      mick
       
    15. jazz
      No Mood

      jazz Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      eardrum rupture from virus; barotrauma from ETD
      Currently, neurofeedback is used to treat many disorders, especially ADHD. There have been numerous studies on neurofeedback for tinnitus--such as those cited above--but none that proved the treatment restored the excitatory-inhibitory imbalance responsible for centralized tinnitus, ie., brain based. A new study addresses this issue and proves the treatment to be effacious in restoring this balance. Perhaps not suprisingly, TT's own aurelientt undertook the treatment and never reported his results. I'm guessing the treatment worked, and he is now tinnitus free. But, like many who habituate, he did not return to tell his success story.

      Here is the abstract to the study cited above:

      Brain Topogr. 2013 May 23. [Epub ahead of print]

      The Effects of Neurofeedback on Oscillatory Processes Related to Tinnitus

      Hartmann T, Lorenz I, Müller N, Langguth B, Weisz N.

      Source
      CIMeC, Center for Mind/Brain Sciences, Università degli Studi di Trento, via delle Regole, 101 Mattarello, 38060, Trento, Italy, thomas.hartmann@th-ht.de.

      Abstract
      Although widely used, no proof exists for the feasibility of neurofeedback for reinstating the disordered excitatory-inhibitory balance, marked by a decrease in auditory alpha power, in tinnitus patients. The current study scrutinizes the ability of neurofeedback to focally increase alpha power in auditory areas in comparison to the more common rTMS. Resting-state MEG was measured before and after neurofeedback (n = 8) and rTMS (n = 9) intervention respectively. Source level power and functional connectivity were analyzed with a focus on the alpha band. Only neurofeedback produced a significant decrease in tinnitus symptoms and-more important for the context of the study-a spatially circumscribed increase in alpha power in right auditory regions. Connectivity analysis revealed higher outgoing connectivity in a region ultimately neighboring the area in which power increases were observed. Neurofeedback decreases tinnitus symptoms and increases alpha power in a spatially circumscribed manner. In addition, compared to a more established brain stimulation-based intervention, neurofeedback is a promising approach to renormalize the excitatory-inhibitory imbalance putatively underlying tinnitus. This study is the first to demonstrate the feasibility of focally enhancing alpha activity in tinnitus patients by means of neurofeedback.

      Source:
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23700271


      Below are additional articles on neurofeeback in general, including one article that is critical of treatment:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neurofeedback
      http://psychcentral.com/lib/neurofeedback-training-for-your-brain/0001239
      http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-244X/12/107
      http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130896102
      http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/brain-myths/201302/read-paying-100s-neurofeedback-therapy-0
       
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    16. Markku
      Inspired

      Markku Director Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Syringing
      I just contacted him. Let's see if he could come back and share his story. I suppose other people are curious too!
       
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    17. Grant1

      Grant1 Member

      Markku, when I traveled to the clinic at the University of Antwerp, I had the pleasure of meeting a Belgian citizen who was receiving tinnitus treatment there on my first day at the clinic. He had been a musician. The gentleman told me that neurofeedback helped him. He had utilized the pharmaceuticals that are prescribed at the clinic and as I remember he told me that one (or maybe more) of the drugs made him depressed and maybe he said suicidal.

      I assume neither transcranial magnetic stimulation nor direct current stimulation helped him. He was helped, though, by the neurofeedback.
       
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    18. jazz
      No Mood

      jazz Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      eardrum rupture from virus; barotrauma from ETD
      Below is an article that demonstrates how successful neurofeedback affects brain connectivity. For tinnitus sufferers, neurofeedback has the potential to unwire the maladaptive plasticity that occurs as a result of auditory deafferentation, which affects most tinnitus sufferers. The study below pertains to neurofeedback on visual disorders. But neurofeedback is also efficacious for tinnitus sufferers. Right now, people desiring neurofeedback treatment face two main obstacles:

      1. A lack of qualified neurofeedback practitioners.
      2. Better protocols to address chronic tinnitus sufferers. Current protocols are affected by tinnitus duration; and, after three years, neurofeedback's efficacy is greatly diminished due to the declining variability of auditory alpha.​


      PLoS One. 2014 Mar 7;9(3):e91090. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0091090. eCollection 2014.
      Connectivity changes underlying neurofeedback training of visual cortex activity.
      Scharnowski F1, Rosa MJ2, Golestani N3, Hutton C4, Josephs O4, Weiskopf N4, Rees G5.

      Author information

      Abstract

      Neurofeedback based on real-time functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is a new approach that allows training of voluntary control over regionally specific brain activity. However, the neural basis of successful neurofeedback learning remains poorly understood. Here, we assessed changes in effective brain connectivity associated with neurofeedback training of visual cortex activity. Using dynamic causal modeling (DCM), we found that training participants to increase visual cortex activity was associated with increased effective connectivity between the visual cortex and the superior parietal lobe. Specifically, participants who learned to control activity in their visual cortex showed increased top-down control of the superior parietal lobe over the visual cortex, and at the same time reduced bottom-up processing. These results are consistent with efficient employment of top-down visual attention and imagery, which were the cognitive strategies used by participants to increase their visual cortex activity.

      Refernces: (See the second one for a full free text)

      See also:
       
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    19. Kurtis Walton

      Kurtis Walton Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      1975
      Wow did not know they had lists like this. I was continuing my research with Tinnitus and Neurofeedback. This is Kurtis Walton the owner of Alaska Neurofeedback. There have been some major updates since the time of this conversation. I personally am still battling it since I have severe Tinnitus. I have help others who have developed it later in life (I was born with it).
      The other thing I have discovered that helps with Tinnitus is the Listening Program. I started working with it and am helping people use the process of the Listening Program.
       
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    20. JeffDamsko

      JeffDamsko Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2010
    21. Mo_Mo

      Mo_Mo Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      25/11/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown, Started A Week After A Cold
      Please update us on how it goes there
       
    22. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
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    23. Lance

      Lance Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2015
    24. Bertman
      No Mood

      Bertman Member Benefactor

      Location:
      canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      concert
      Luckily I have a relative that does biofeedback and am going to try it out. I'll let everyone know if it helps.
       
    25. Telis

      Telis Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Calgary
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2013
      I did the LENS neurofeedback treatment for a few moths with ZERO results. No change in my tinnitus or anything else.
       
    26. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      I also had underwhelming results with neurofeedback, but the thing is -- neurofeedback is a technology, not a protocol.

      There have been a few papers written that have shown modest but significant results using neurofeedback, but they used very specific protocols that were devised with tinnitus specifically in mind. Most of the places hocking neurofeedback (at least where I am) seem to be focused on ADHD, and I did not get the sense that they were doing a ton of research and targeting my problem specifically, I think they just try to shoehorn me into the same mold they use for 14 year olds with attention problems.

      If I was going to take another run at this, I'd want to do it in a way that was informed by the research which has shown some efficiency for tinnitus -- but it's very expensive, to the point where I'd also consider just rigging up an EEG helmet and attempting it myself.
       
    27. Marcuseva03

      Marcuseva03 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2015
      Hi everyone! I developed tinnitus recently. I have been reading up alot on neurofeedback. It is not the cost that i am worried about but the side effect of the 'training'. Allowing some guy to alter your brainwaves does have its potential danger right? Anyone suffer from serious side effect from neurofeedback training?
       
    28. Marcuseva03

      Marcuseva03 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2015
      Hi guys. Anyone knows aboutany danger of neurofeedback? Im thinking of trying it. But in afraid of the nasty side effects.
       
    29. Marcuseva03

      Marcuseva03 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2015
      I have been doing some research on my own for neurofeedback. I realised that there are specific brain waves that needed to be adjusted. The 'treatments' that you are going through got to be specific for tinnitus. If not all the sessions you did could be useless.
       
    30. Marcuseva03

      Marcuseva03 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      July 2015
      I just got home from a local neurofb centre. Spoke to a woman who had tinnitus for 20 yrs and she has significant improvement. She said it reduced from an 8 to 1 after 17 sessions of nf. She stopped using music to sleep at night too! Amazing results. Her cause of tinnitus is ear infection and is only on her left ear. She is so happy with the results and will be doing 3 more sessions to consolidate her improvement.

      I am going to start my nf journey next thursday and already had my qeeg brain mapping done. Will be doing a weekly update on my journey here.
       

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