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St. Petersburg Audiologist Offers A Self-Administered Evaluation of Tinnitus

The Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (THI) is a self-administered test that I recommend to my patients. It is a way for them to evaluate the effectiveness of tinnitus treatments. The questionnaire and instructions for scoring are listed below. Everyone who suffers from tinnitus should have an audiological exam and physician exam.

Craig W. Newman, PhD, with two other researchers developed the Tinnitus Handicap Inventory in 1996 and it is the most common questionnaire used by audiologists and physicians. It consists of 25 questions divided into 3 subgroups: functional, emotional and catastrophic. Eleven items are included in the functional scale, 9 in the emotional scale and 5 in the catastrophic scale. Prefixes in the numbered questions are used to indicate to which subgroup the question belongs.

Please note that question 24 has the highest correlation to the total score because stress is a fundamental element in determining the degree of distress.

If your THI score improves by of 6-7 points with tinnitus treatment you probably received a clinically significant result.

The questionnaire and instructions for scoring are listed below.

TINNITUS HANDICAP INVENTORY

The aim of this questionnaire is to find out what problem tinnitus might be giving you. Check yes, sometimes, or no for each question.

F1 Because of your tinnitus is it difficult for you to concentrate?
F2 Does the loudness of your tinnitus make it difficult for you to hear?
E3 Does your tinnitus make you angry?
F4 Does your tinnitus make you feel confused?
C5 Because of your tinnitus do you feel desperate?
E6 Do you complain a great deal about your tinnitus?
F7 Because of your tinnitus do you have trouble falling asleep?
C8 Do you feel as though you cannot escape your tinnitus?
F9 Does your tinnitus interfere with your ability to enjoy social activities such as going out to dinner, cinema?
E10 Because of your tinnitus do you feel frustrated?
C11 Because of your tinnitus do you feel you have a terrible disease?
F12 Does your tinnitus make it difficult for you to enjoy life?
F13 Does your tinnitus interfere with your job or household responsibilities?
F14 Because of your tinnitus do you find that you are often irritable?
F15 Because of your tinnitus is it difficult for you to read?
E16 Does your tinnitus make you upset?
E17 Do you feel that your tinnitus has placed stress on your relationship with members of your family, friends?
F18 Do you find it difficult to focus your attention away from your tinnitus and on to other things?
C19 Do you feel that you have no control over your tinnitus?
F20 Because of your tinnitus are you often tired?
E21 Because of your tinnitus do you feel depressed?
E22 Does your tinnitus make you feel anxious?
C23 Do you feel that you can no longer cope with your tinnitus?
F24 Does your tinnitus get worse when you are under stress?
E25 Does your tinnitus make you feel insecure?

How to score the Questionnaire

YES = 4 
SOMETIMES = 2
 NO = 0

TOTAL SCORE

0-16 Slight (Only heard in quiet environments)
18-36 Mild (Easily masked by environmental sounds and easily forgotten with activities)
38-56 Moderate (Noticed in presence of background noise, although daily activities can still be performed)
58-76 Severe (Almost always heard, leads to disturbed sleep patterns and can interfere with daily activities)
78-100 Catastrophic (Always heard, disturbed sleep patterns, difficulty with any activities)

Contact me at gardneraudiology.com

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Daniel Gardner, M.S.

Daniel Gardner, M.S.

Founder and CEO of Gardner Audiology
Daniel Gardner, M.S.

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