Due to the fact that tinnitus is a complex condition with a multifactorial origin, experts in this group will consist of otologists, audiologists, neurologists, psychiatrists, psychologists, neurophysiologists, clinical trial methodologists and representatives from the industry. Based on a previously started consensus process (30) experts from different disciplines will join forces  and further develop standardization procedures for easy, practicable and meaningful patient characterization. Guidelines for detailed clinical definition and phenotypic characterization of cases and controls will be developed. Importantly, not only tinnitus characteristics (e.g. loudness, frequency, modulatory factors) but also comorbid conditions (e.g. hyperacusis, depression, anxiety) and impact (tinnitus related handicap, quality of life) will be assessed. Furthermore, data on environmental factors (hearing impairment, head- or necktrauma, stress) will be collected.

This working group will perform the following central tasks

  • Development of harmonized guidelines for demographic and clinical assessment of patients and controls as well as definition of criteria for control recruitment
  • Development of standards for audiological assessment of patients and controls
  • Development of a web-based tool for demographic and clinical assessment, symptom scoring instruments and specific validated self-report questionnaires
  • Dissemination of the guidelines and standards
  • Organization of Short Term Scientific Missions, allowing medical professionals to benefit from clinical training in the setting of established clinics dedicated to the assessment and management of tinnitus and related disorder
  • Implementation of guidelines and recommendations on the COST Action website

TINNET is a European research network funded from April 11, 2014 to April 10, 2018 by the COST program under the Action number BM1306.

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