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Exploring Voluntary Control of Tinnitus

2014-08-27 03:19:29 | BioPortfolio

Summary

This pilot study aims to increase the understanding of tinnitus through the identification of potentially altered brain networks in patients who are able to voluntarily control or alter their tinnitus. Upon completion of this study, new knowledge will be gained about the changes in brain activity in people who are able to modify their tinnitus.

Description

Certain patients report that they are able to modulate the loudness or pitch of their tinnitus temporarily through various means, including attention re-direction or somatosensory mechanisms such as oral facial movements or head turn. This subset of patients may represent a unique opportunity for the researcher to gain insight into the mechanisms responsible for tinnitus.

Neural activity in the brain has been linked to increases in blood flow and blood oxygenation. These changes in the concentration of oxyhemoglobin versus deoxyhemoglobin alter the magnetic resonance signal of blood which may then be detected using an appropriate MR pulse sequence as blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) contrast. In addition to increases in blood flow due to evoked neural activity, the brain exhibits continuous low frequency spontaneous activity. These fluctuations tend to be synchronous in functionally related, but spatially distinct, regions of the brain even when not performing a prescribed task. The phrase functional connectivity has been used to implicate the neural activity that facilitates the coordinated activity of functionally related brain regions.

This study will use functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (fcMRI) to measure the network of synchronous brain activity in patients with tinnitus. Several targeted networks are those linked to the auditory system, attention, and control systems and the emotion systems linked to prefrontal cortex. Previously, functional MRI (fMRI) used changes in blood flow and blood oxygenation within the brain to detect which isolated regions of the brain were active during a task. The goal of functional connectivity research is to describe a pattern of interactions or a picture of the connectivity that occurs within distinct regions of the brain when the individual is not involved in a task.

Study Design

Observational Model: Cohort, Time Perspective: Cross-Sectional

Conditions

Tinnitus

Location

Washington University School of Medicine
St. Louis
Missouri
United States
63110

Status

Recruiting

Source

Washington University School of Medicine

Results (where available)

View Results

Links

Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:19:29-0400

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PubMed Articles [66 Associated PubMed Articles listed on BioPortfolio]

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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

A nonspecific symptom of hearing disorder characterized by the sensation of buzzing, ringing, clicking, pulsations, and other noises in the ear. Objective tinnitus refers to noises generated from within the ear or adjacent structures that can be heard by other individuals. The term subjective tinnitus is used when the sound is audible only to the affected individual. Tinnitus may occur as a manifestation of COCHLEAR DISEASES; VESTIBULOCOCHLEAR NERVE DISEASES; INTRACRANIAL HYPERTENSION; CRANIOCEREBRAL TRAUMA; and other conditions.

An accumulation of ENDOLYMPH in the inner ear (LABYRINTH) leading to buildup of pressure and distortion of intralabyrinthine structures, such as COCHLEA and SEMICIRCULAR CANALS. It is characterized by SENSORINEURAL HEARING LOSS; TINNITUS; and sometimes VERTIGO.

A disease of the inner ear (LABYRINTH) that is characterized by fluctuating SENSORINEURAL HEARING LOSS; TINNITUS; episodic VERTIGO; and aural fullness. It is the most common form of endolymphatic hydrops.

Idiopathic inflammation of the VESTIBULAR NERVE, characterized clinically by the acute or subacute onset of VERTIGO; NAUSEA; and imbalance. The COCHLEAR NERVE is typically spared and HEARING LOSS and TINNITUS do not usually occur. Symptoms usually resolve over a period of days to weeks. (Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p304)

A rare PARAGANGLIOMA involving the GLOMUS TYMPANICUM, a collection of chemoreceptor tissue adjacent to the TYMPANIC CAVITY. It can cause TINNITUS and conductive hearing loss (HEARING LOSS, CONDUCTIVE).

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