New Study Offers Hope for Tinnitus Sufferers

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A new study undertaken at the School of Human Communications Disorders at Dalhousie University used a new software product called Quiescence to prove that a form of tinnitus treatment called residual inhibition is an effective means for offering relief to sufferers of this mostly incurable condition. The study results were greeted with optimism by leading tinnitus researchers, including leading tinnitus researcher Dr. Jack Vernon of the Oregon Health & Science University.

“Tinnitus, a condition of ringing or buzzing in the ears, afflicts over 40 million Americans, and millions more people worldwide. A quarter of these people are severely debilitated,” said Dr. Dennis Woo (PhD), Vice President of Spectral Visualization and Development (SVD) Inc. SVD is a software company in Canada that has developed a revolutionary new product, called Quiescence, for diagnosing and treating tinnitus.

“Quiescence allows audiologists to precisely model the patient’s tinnitus,” said Dr. Woo, “and reproduce a sound that exactly matches the tinnitus pitch of the patient. When this sound is played to the patient, the majority of tinnitus patients will experience a silencing of the tinnitus known as residual inhibition. This sound is recorded into an audio CD or other popular format such as MP3 players that patients can use to relieve the tinnitus as needed.”

“This is a nice means of getting patients to participate in their own treatment,” said Dr. Tom Robertson from the Beltone Hearing Clinic in Springfield, Illinois. “It’s non-invasive, and allows patients to lead more normal lives.”

A recent study undertaken by the School of Human Communications Disorders at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia used Quiescence to examine the effectiveness of frequency matched masking and residual inhibition in tinnitus therapy.

“The results confirmed our assumptions that residual inhibition is an effective means of treating tinnitus,” said Dr. Woo, “and that Quiescence is an effective tool for targeting a patient’s specific tinnitus sound and quickly creating an exactly matched tone that will bring relief.”

“Matching the tinnitus pitch and frequency does a much better job of producing residual inhibition than when it is not matched,” said Dr. Jack Vernon, Professor Emeritus of Otolaryngology at the Oregon Health & Science University. Dr. Vernon is commonly acknowledged as the “father of modern tinnitus masking.”.

“From the findings of this study,” said Dr. Vernon, “it looks like Quiescence does this successfully.”

Dr. Ravi Sockalingham of Dalhousie University supervised the study. “The software itself is easy to use,” he said. “Everything is software-driven. You just point and click at features that are well laid out.”

“There are many other tools for tinnitus,” said Dr. Woo, “But Quiescence is unique because it actually finds out where the tinnitus is located. Other tools basically just cover up the tinnitus no matter where it is, a sort of one-size-fits-all approach. Quiescence allows audiologists to make a CD that is customized for the patient’s specific tinnitus.”

“Quiescence is also very affordable and convenient,” said Dr. Woo. “Audiologists will simply purchase their licenses and use Quiescence on as many patients as they want at no additional charge. And all the patients need is a CD player that they can use at home or even while driving. Plus, the tinnitus parameters obtained by Quiescence can be incorporated into devices such as hearing aids to increase the level of tinnitus relief.”

Copies of the School of Human Communications Disorders study can be obtained free of charge from SVD.

SVD Inc is a software company in New Brunswick, Canada, specializing in advanced signal processing technologies.

For a complete copy of the study, contact:

Dr. Dennis Woo, Vice President of Product Development

SVD Inc

921 College Road

Fredericton, New Brunswick

Canada     E3B 6Z9

Phone: 506-460-1625

Fax: 506-460-1626

Email: dwoo@svdinc.com

Web site: http://www.svdinc.com

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Dr. Dennis Woo
SVD Inc
506-460-1625
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