Questionnaires to evaluate anxiety and depressive levels in tinnitus patients

Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2009 Mar;140(3):403-5. doi: 10.1016/j.otohns.2008.11.036.


Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the correlation between the most common instruments used to quantify tinnitus and the level of anxiety and depression experienced by patients in order to provide a guideline for otolaryngologists.

Study design: Cross-sectional survey.

Subjects and methods: A total of 108 tinnitus patients were submitted to a series of instruments, including Visual Analogue Scales (VAS), Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (THI), State Trait Anxiety Inventory Form Y (STAI-T), and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). These instruments were chosen based on their psychometric properties, time of administration, and validity in many countries.

Results: Of the patients studied, 24 percent had severe tinnitus, 35 percent had anxiety disorders, and 13 percent had a depressive pathosis. Significant correlations between STAI-T and THI scores (P < 0.001), and between BDI and THI scores were shown (P < 0.001). The same results were found with VAS.

Conclusion: If a patient reports a THI greater than 38, the otolaryngologist should supplement diagnostic studies with a psychological consultation.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anxiety / epidemiology*
  • Comorbidity
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Depression / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Tinnitus / psychology*