Tinnitus patients lost to follow-up

Int J Audiol. 2010 Dec;49(12):877-80. doi: 10.3109/14992027.2010.505583.


Tinnitus patients without hearing loss or hyperacusis often start tinnitus retraining therapy but do not return to the tinnitus clinic for follow-up visits. The aim of this study was to evaluate how these 'missing patients' feel and whether they still use their sound generators after they discontinue retraining therapy. We interviewed 269 tinnitus patients by phone who never returned to the clinic after receiving initial counseling and a generator for sound enrichment. Twenty-six percent did not have tinnitus anymore, 30.5% still used the sound generator to treat their tinnitus, and 43.5% did not use their sound generator but still suffered from tinnitus. This study suggests that therapists need to contact missing patients periodically to follow their improvement, encourage them, and decide on new therapeutic approaches as necessary.

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation / instrumentation
  • Acoustic Stimulation / methods*
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Counseling*
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Lost to Follow-Up*
  • Motivation
  • Patient Compliance*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors
  • Tinnitus / psychology
  • Tinnitus / therapy*
  • Treatment Outcome