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Tinnitus Library

Ask Barry - April 2012

Do you have questions about tinnitus, our products or specific treatments? Ask Barry. Arches President Barry Keate will select the most representative questions each month publication. Regardless all questions will receive a personal reply from Barry.

ASK BARRY Tinnitus expert, Barry Keate, answers your questions about Tinnitus Send your question to:  Ask Barry

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April 2012 Questions:

London Calling with Tinnitus

Dear Barry,

I have just read in my national paper a new treatment for tinnitus called Acoustic Coordinated Reset Neuromodulation.  The trial led by Professor Peter Tass at Julich Research Centre in Germany claims to reduce levels of both loudness and annoyance of tinnitus within 12 weeks compared with patients who received a placebo.

The patients wear headphones and a series of different tones are played for four to six hours a day for nine months.  Over time the auditory neurons learn to stop firing and the persistent noise eases.

I live in London and the treatment is available for £4,500 ($7,200) which is a considerable amount of money.  What are your thoughts on this new treatment, please?  Is it any different from a similar treatment with ear phones?

Many thanks. Andrea R.

Dear Andrea,

Acoustic Coordinated Reset (or CR) Neuromodulation is a technology that counteracts pathologic neuronal synchronicity, a condition that is thought to be the root cause of conditions like tinnitus and Parkinson’s disease. Acoustic signals based on a complex mathematical algorithm interrupt neuronal synchronicity, causing the neurons to “unlearn” the synchronous pattern and remain in an asynchronous state.

The study you mention had a positive outcome However it was quite small, at 63 participants, and more studies are needed to verify results. A larger study is currently seeking applicants in Germany. This study will enroll 200 patients and last until July, 2013.

There are many sound-based tinnitus treatments that have positive results. They are all in the same price range. These include Tinnitus Retraining Therapy, Neuromonics, Phase Shift Tinnitus Reduction, and others.

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

Plavix, Ginkgo and Tinnitus

Hello Barry,

I am currently on 75mg of Plavix.  Do you believe it is okay to take Arches Tinnitus Formula?  I know that if I check with my cardiologist he'll tell me that I just have to deal with the tinnitus.I've had it for over 8 years but it really didn't bother me that much until about a month ago. I imagine it was lots of stress and other issues going on in my life.

I've checked out a lot of sites that promise a 100% cure which I know isn't accurate.  Your site seems to be the only one that deals with reality and common sense.

Thanks.

Alex S.

Dear Alex,

Thanks for your question; it's a very important one. It is not OK to combine Arches Tinnitus Formula with Plavix, unless with the consent and participation of your prescribing doctor. The reason for this is both Plavix and Ginkgo biloba extract, one of the main ingredients in Arches Tinnitus Formula, are blood thinners. If you thin the blood too much, dangerous side-effects can occur.

This is not an absolute rule. With your doctor's consent you can reduce the amount of Plavix to compensate for the blood-thinning effects of Ginkgo biloba. In this case there is no danger and no interactions. It will require a few blood tests, while taking both products, to determine how thin the blood is running and adjust the dosage of Plavix accordingly. Afterwards, you can use both with confidence.

This question is interesting to me because, in my opinion, no one needs to take Plavix. Its mechanism of action is precisely one of the things that ginkgo does. In addition to many other health benefits of ginkgo, including its effect on tinnitus, it antagonizes Platelet Aggregating Factor (PAF) and prevents atherosclerosis, the build-up of plaque on the walls of blood vessels. This is exactly what Plavix advertises. Plavix is a synthetic prescription medication and is much stronger than ginkgo but ginkgo does the same thing over time. Ginkgo even reduces cholesterol. After using Arches TRF for about 2 years, my cholesterol level went from 250 to 160 with no changes in diet or exercise. My HDL, the good cholesterol, was raised and now my HDL and LDL are now in harmony.

You can read an informative article on Arches Tinnitus Formula: The Science Behind the Product. Please read through this to understand how it works and show it to your cardiologist.

I do not advocate stopping the use of Plavix without your doctor's approval but you should be able to use both and gradually reduce the Plavix as your condition improves.

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

Sound Therapy and Tinnitus 411

Dear Barry,

I like your products and after two months my tinnitus (and my dealing with) is becoming less of a disaster. I have a question:  Do you have an opinion on sound therapy? It  seems it may help for some people but can take too many hours a day. Could  actually make my tinnitus worse? I realize this is not a substitute for your products. In addition to the easing of my tinnitus I am getting good positive effects from your supplements and will continue to purchase.

Thank you,

Jim K.

Dear Jim,

I'm very happy you are having positive results using our products. The question about sound therapy is very broad. There are many sound-based devices on the market from small, inexpensive and largely ineffective, devices to sophisticated, quite effective, programs to reduce tinnitus.

Some of the more effective treatments are Sound Based Tinnitus Therapy for the Tinnitus Control Center in New York City. This approach consists of tinnitus matching to produce a sound that exactly replicates the tinnitus sound experienced by the patient. Then the sound is phase-shifted to be out of phase with the tinnitus and played back on a high quality CD system. The phase-shift produces a sound that cancels out the sound of the tinnitus.

Another approach that is gaining in popularity is Neuromonics. The goal of this therapy is not to reduce the tinnitus but to desensitize the brain to the sounds of tinnitus and to reduce the patient's annoyance with the sound.

Listening to sound therapy will not make your tinnitus worse. Here at Arches we believe that multiple approaches to tinnitus therapy can be very rewarding and I hope one of these is helpful for you.

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

NOTE: Ask Barry is pleased to be able to answer your questions based upon the information we have available. Our answers to your email inquiries are not substitutes for a physician's advice nor are they reviewed by a physician. If you are under a physician's care, we encourage you to share any suggestions you have received from Ask Barry with your doctor.