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Tinnitus Library

Ask Barry - December 2005

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 Search our Tinnitus Library Center or FAQs

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, please share with your doctor any suggestions you have received from Ask Barry

This Month's Questions:

Alpha lipoic acid and tinnitus

Hi Barry, I am currently taking a product called Ageless and it is truly great. It delivers Alpha lipoic acid in a very different way than your average alpha lipoic acid. I am not taking CoQ10. This stuff is very expensive. Is it necessary to take CoQ10 and Alpha lipoic acid together or is one of these enough? I currently use your Tinnitus Relief Formula and it is great.

Thanks Ric

Hi Ric, Alpha Lipoic Acid is a wonderful supplement to use. It is a universal antioxidant and is a co-factor in vital energy producing reactions in the body. CoQ-10 is also involved in energy producing reactions and is vital to heart health. You are right that it is expensive and many people cannot afford to use it.

One of my favorite combinations is Acetyl-L-Carnitine (500 mg) and Alpha Lipoic Acid (150 mg). Acetyl-L-Carnitine is also fairly expensive but not like CoQ-10. These two are the basis of Dr. Seidman's Anti-Age/Energy Formula, which also contains CoQ-10 and Glutathione. There have been a lot of studies conducted on these two components that show they work synergistically to produce energy, protect neurons and provide antioxidant protection. This is very important for improved hearing health.

For a more detailed discussion of these supplements, please see our article on Neurotoxins and Tinnitus. Combinations of Acetyl-L-Carnitine and Alpha Lipoic Acid can be found in some better health food stores.

To answer your question of whether it’s OK to use Alpha Lipoic Acid by itself, the answer is yes. It is a great supplement and provides universal antioxidant protection.

Wishing you quiet times, Barry Keate

A hydrop of a different color...

Dear Barry: Lately I have been reading quite a bit about Endolymphatic Hydrops and cochlear Meniere’s Disease (a.k.a. cochlear hydrops), which apparently are symptoms of Meniere’s disease or endolymphatic hydrops without the vertigo. In other words, I guess its having fluctuating hearing loss, fluctuating aural fullness and fluctuating tinnitus. My question is: How does one know if you have this cochlear hydrops or just straight tinnitus.

In reading the literature, it sounds like this Endolymphatic Hydrops is progressive and gradually destroys the hearing mechanism whereas tinnitus is just bothersome and traumatic, but in no way are you gradually losing your hearing. Meniere’s disease includes attacks as does straight tinnitus. I am very confused on the line between these two conditions. It seems that the two conditions, i.e. hydrops and tinnitus are very closely related and may overlap each other.

Sincerely, Bob Shirley

Dear Bob; You are correct in saying Endolymphatic Hydrops and tinnitus can be closely related. Endolymphatic Hydrops is an increase in fluid pressure within the inner ear which is also called Meniere’s disease. It is characterized by a feeling of fullness in the ears, varying degrees of hearing loss, bouts of vertigo and tinnitus. Meniere’s disease will cause hearing loss and tinnitus in almost all cases but hearing loss and tinnitus do not cause Meniere’s disease.

The best way to determine if you have this condition is to see an Ear, Nose and Throat physician. They typically diagnose based on the presence of four simultaneous symptoms; vertigo, fullness in the ear, fluctuating hearing loss and tinnitus. There are some new tests available that provide objective proof of the condition. In one, the use of diuretics to improve the condition is used. In the other, auditory brainstem response to clicking sounds is measured.

Meniere’s disease is treatable. If you think you may have this condition, you should consult with an ENT.

Wishing you quiet times, Barry Keate

Follow up research on TRF?

Hi Barry, I ordered Arches Tinnitus Combo Pack this morning in hopes of alleviating the RINGING IN MY EARS! I have not seen an ENT doctor yet (my appointment is on Dec. 13th), however my neighbor went to an ENT doc recently for her tinnitus, and he recommended your product.

Can you tell me what statistics you have compiled and/or what follow-up you have done with those who have purchased your products? Do you do follow-up research with everyone who purchases your tinnitus formulas?

Thanks very much,

Donna, Victoria BC Canada

Dear Donna, We do not do follow up comparisons with our customers. Being in retail business, we have a significant percentage of people who are non-compliant. It’s amazing how many people will hear that you have to try it for 100 days (4 bottles) then discontinue after one month because they think it doesn't work. There is no way we would be able to sort out compliant and non-compliant customers. After more than seven years in business we have thousands of repeat customers.

Instead, we rely on clinical studies conducted on the components used in our products. We have over 35 clinical studies we send to doctors who are interested. Several of the major studies are on our website . The first one listed is a review of 19 clinical studies conducted on tinnitus patients who used premium-grade Ginkgo biloba extract. This is a very easy study to read and I suggest you print it out and review it.

There are now over 1,000 ENT physicians who refer their tinnitus patients to us. We also have the endorsement of Michael Seidman, MD, who states his experience is 10% of people have a complete reduction, 10% have no change and 80% have a reduction which varies by the individual. Truthfully, some of this 80% may have less than significant change. Dr. Seidman believes that 50-60% of people who use our products for the full three month period (4 bottles of TRF) will have a significant reduction in sound of 50% or more. Another 25-35% will have less than 50% and the remainder will have no change. Personally I have experienced a 70% reduction in my tinnitus.

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, please share with your doctor any suggestions you have received from Ask Barry.