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Tinnitus Library

Ask Barry - May 2012

Do you have questions about tinnitus, our products or specific treatments? Ask Barry. Arches President Barry Keate will select the most representative and interesting questions each month. All questions 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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May 2012 Questions:

Decongestants, Weight Loss and Tinnitus

Dear Barry,

Love your products...have been taking them for several years.  Thanks so much for all you do for tinnitus sufferers.  Recently I discovered that the drug Allegra causes weight gain... and I have battled weight for years.  It was suggested by Dr Oz on his TV show to take a nasal decongestant instead of an antihistamine since blocking histamines can disrupt an enzyme in the brain that helps regulate food consumption.  Do you know of any decongestant that would not worsen tinnitus?  Your reply would be greatly appreciated.


Sandra M.

Dear Sandra,

Decongestants are very problematic when it comes to tinnitus. All of them list tinnitus as a possible side effect. That does not mean that all people using them will develop or worsen tinnitus but a certain percentage will. I don't know what the percentage is. I can only say to try using one and if tinnitus worsens, stop immediately.

There are other solutions besides medications. Neti pots are very good for clearing sinuses. Saline sinus washes are also effective. My wife uses Nasaline Nasal Rinse Kit and swears by it. It keeps her sinuses clean and allergies under control. Nasaline can be found at I hope this is helpful.

Wishing you quiet times, Barry Keate

Pregnancy, Blood Clots and Tinnitus 


I have been trying to get pregnant for over seven years (after the birth of my little girl).  We have had three early miscarriages and as a result starting multiple blood tests.  I found out I have tested positive for certain gene mutations. My doctor has said that this gives me an increased risk of blood clots. Also, about eight months ago I started having ringing in my ears. It never goes away and I am wondering if it has anything to do with my blood "issues"? My doctor has told me to take a baby aspirin daily to thin my blood, but I am wondering if I can kill two birds with one stone and take your products instead?  Given that my doctor didn't know about your product completely, she told me to ask you. Any information or guidance would be greatly appreciated.

Also, since I have had the tinnitus for eight months, I am hoping I have not started too late for this to be reversed.  Do you think that is the case?

Thanks! Jenna C.

Dear Jenna,

Arches Tinnitus Formula (ATF) will have a positive effect on your risk of blood clots. Ginkgo biloba, the primary ingredient in ATF, strongly antagonizes the effect of Platelet Aggregating Factor (PAF). PAF is a metabolite that induces the aggregation of blood platelets, which can lead to the formation of blood clots.

Think of the television ads for Plavix. They show platelets aggregating on the walls of blood vessels. By using Plavix, the platelets are gradually reduced and blood flow resumes normally. This is exactly the way Ginkgo biloba extract reduces platelet aggregation. In this sense, Plavix could be considered to be synthetic ginkgo.

Unless you have an unusual bleeding problem, you can also take a baby aspirin along with the Tinnitus Formula. Combined, they should be very effective in reducing the risk of blood clots.

I can’t promise this will help with getting pregnant but it should help with tinnitus. Studies show that treatment with ginkgo during the first year of tinnitus onset results in a greater potential for reduction.

Wishing you quiet times,

Barry Keate

"Benzo" withdrawal and Tinnitus

Dear Barry,

I have developed tinnitus which has morphed into head noises which are hissing, buzzing whooshing while tapering off Diazepam. I have not quite finished the “taper” and the noises get louder as I continue the taper. I am wondering if you have any experience of treating tinnitus caused by benzodiazepine usage and if it is OK to take your product during tapering and recovery?

Thank you, Andrew L.

Dear Andrew,

This is known as Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Syndrome, or Benzo Withdrawal. Symptoms of this withdrawal are numerous, ranging from insomnia to hypertension, anxiety, blurred vision and, of course, tinnitus, among many others. It is similar to alcohol and barbiturate withdrawal syndromes and, in extreme cases, can lead to life threatening conditions such as seizure. This withdrawal syndrome usually occurs after high dosage, long-term use, when the taper period is conducted too quickly. It can also occur after low dosage short-term use but the higher the dosage and the longer the period of use generally lead to more severe symptoms.

This is not a permanent condition. Usually, it will resolve after the body adjusts to the lack of the medication. Sometimes it can continue for a few months after that. However, it is not permanent. There are two ways to manage this condition: one is to prolong the taper period by maintaining a steady dose until symptoms disappear, and then continue the taper. The other is to continue as you are doing, knowing this will not be a permanent condition.

It is perfectly OK to use Arches Tinnitus Formulas during this period. They should be very helpful.

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. We encourage you to share any suggestions you have received from Ask Barry with your doctor.