Tinnitus: Is there a place for brain stimulation?

Gusta van Zwieten*, Jasper Smit, A. Jahanshahi, Yasin Temel, Robert Stokroos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Tinnitus is the perception of a "phantom sound" and has a high prevalence. Although many therapies have been investigated within the last decades, there is still no effective standard therapy. Animal studies and human functional imaging studies revealed that tinnitus perception is associated with many complex changes in multiple brain structures. There is growing evidence that brain stimulation might be able to interrupt the local altered neuronal activity and hereby inhibit tinnitus perception. In this editorial review, an update is given on the most promising targets for brain stimulation. Promising structures for stimulation are the dorsal cochlear nucleus, the inferior colliculus and the medial geniculate body of the thalamus. For cortical stimulation, the auditory cortex is considered as a target. Nevertheless, the field is waiting for evidence from well-designed clinical trials, based on supporting evidence from experimental/mechanistic research, to support or discourage the application of brain stimulation in tinnitus.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S125-129
JournalSurgical Neurology International
Issue numberSuppl 4
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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