|Beitragstitel||Exploring MRI neuro-feedback as a treatment for chronic tinnitus.|
Objectives: Increasing evidence claims for a role of the central nervous system in tinnitus pathogenesis. We aim to show that MRI neurofeedback (NF) is at least as valuable in reducing tinnitus as the current standard of care group Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT); furthermore to evaluate the correlation between behavioural scores, audiological measures and MRI signals of the auditory cortex.
Material and methods: A total of n=45 patients are allocated (using a minimization algorithm) in either group CBT (n=15) (10 sessions under professional guidance) or functional MRI NF group (n=30), (15 sessions of NF training, Siemens Prisma 3T). Inclusion criteria: adult patients with chronic (>6 months) non-pulsatile severe tinnitus, as determined by a validated test (Tinnitus Handicap Inventory, THI), normal otologic examination, functional hearing and normal cerebral MRI. Full hearing status and behavioural data at baseline, after the completion of the study and on average 4.5 months later are obtained.
Results: As of February 2019, a total of n=26 patients were enrolled, n=11 are in the MRI arm (sessions completed in n=7 and ongoing in n=4), n=5 in the CBT arm and n=10 waiting to start the training. A total of n=3 drops-out were registered (11.5%). Preliminary results show a positive trend in tinnitus reduction for some of the patients in the MRI neurofeedback arm.
Conclusions: Preliminary data are encouraging, proving feasibility and indicating efficacy of MRI-neurofeedback in some of the patients. It seems that patients can learn self-regulation of relevant brain regions, including higher-level association areas. No adverse effects were registered.