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Alterations in Auditory Electrophysiological Responses Associated With Temporary Suppression of Tinnitus Induced by Low-Level Laser Therapy: A Before-After Case Series

Katayoon Montazeri, Saeid Mahmoudian, Zahra Razaghi, Mohammad Farhadi



Introduction: Tinnitus is the phantom auditory perception of sound in the absence of an external or internal acoustic stimulus. The treatment is difficult due to multiple etiologies and great psychological influence. The purpose of this study was to determine alterations in auditory physiological and electrophysiological responses associated with temporary suppression of tinnitus induced by low-level laser (LLL) irradiation.
Methods: This study was conducted on 20 subjects with subjective tinnitus. All subjects signed the informed consent form and satisfied all the study eligibility criteria. Visual analog scale (VAS) for loudness, loudness matching of tinnitus (LMT), pitch matching of tinnitus (PMT), Persian-tinnitus questionnaire (P-TQ) and Persian-tinnitus handicap inventory (P-THI) were conducted pre- and post-low level laser therapy (LLLT) for all the subjects. Electrocochleography (ECochG) and distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs) were recorded in 11 subjects. Continuous wave diode lasers, including red (630 nm) and infra-red (808 nm) were applied, and were both designed by the Canadian Optic and Laser (COL) Center. Twelve sessions of laser therapy were performed, 2 sessions per week for each subject. Total dose was 120 Joule/ear/session.
Results: LLL irradiation could cause a significant decrease in subjective tests scores consisting of VAS for loudness, PMT, P-TQ, P-THI, but did not result in a significant improvement of objective evaluating parameters except for compound action potential (CAP) amplitude.
Conclusion: LLLT might be a subjectively effective treatment for short-term improvement of tinnitus. Defining a new protocol for optimizing LLLT parameters may be an option to improve parameters of objective tests.


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