Science Current Events | Science News | Brightsurf.com
 

GPs using unreliable websites for tinnitus information, study finds

September 13, 2012

GPs are not always using the most comprehensive and reliable online resources to support them in treating patients with the debilitating hearing condition tinnitus, researchers have found.

The study looked at the 10 main websites used by GPs to get information on clinical practice and found that the two best websites for assessing or managing tinnitus - Map of Medicine and the British Tinnitus Association (BTA) - were rarely used by family doctors, with only two per cent logging on to access their pages.

The research, which involved a team of experts from The University of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent University and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) National Biomedical Research Unit in Hearing, is published in the latest edition of the journal BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making.

Dr Derek Hoare, Senior Research Fellow at The University of Nottingham and the NIHR National Biomedical Research Unit in Hearing, said: "We found that there are better options for sources of online information than those currently used by most GPs. Map of Medicine in particular used a rigorous and explicit approach to reporting making its sources of information very transparent and reliable, while The British Tinnitus Association website came out top for the quality of information it currently provides on treatment choice. Despite this, these two websites are rarely used by GPs.
Lacking details

"However, when we analysed the content of the group of websites we found that all were lacking a number of details relating to either assessing or managing tinnitus and so GPs may have to use a combination of websites to be fully informed. Our report also offers a range of recommendations that will help providers of online tinnitus websites to improve their resources."

Tinnitus, a condition in which patients hear a persistent ringing, hissing or buzzing sound in their ears, affects around 10 per cent of the population and is often associated with other illnesses including stress, anxiety, insomnia, depression and communication difficulties.

Patients usually access NHS services such as neurotology or audiological rehabilitation through their GPs. However, a recent national survey of GPs by the research team highlighted that many feel their knowledge of tinnitus is limited and they need better guidelines on how to effectively assess, diagnose and refer their patients.
Inappropriate referrals

In addition, patients with hearing problems expressed concern of poor GP awareness of the condition and other healthcare professionals such as audiologists highlighted inappropriate referrals received from GPs.

As tinnitus is seen to affect a relatively low number of patients at GP surgeries, many doctors are turning to the internet for information on the condition rather than spending resource on specialist training.

However, while the internet can provide instant access to a diverse range of sources, the volume of information available can often make it difficult for GPs to discern between the sites offering sound advice on the management of the condition and those which are inaccurate and unreliable - a Google search of 'tinnitus treatment' generates 11 million results alone.

The research analysed the content of 10 of the sites most commonly used by GPs - which included commercial, charity and Government-run websites - and used a specialist healthcare information score called DISCERN to rate the quality of the information they offered and their usability.

The study found that the Map of Medicine, ranked highest overall for quality and reliability despite achieving a low score for information on the management of tinnitus. Conversely, the BTA site, which was ranked in second place, had one of the highest scores on information on management choices.
Valuable information

The results indicate that GPs would have to visit at least two websites to gather all the information recommended by the Department of Health for good practice in tinnitus care, which is unlikely to happen in a busy practice.

Ironically, the lowest rated website was the NHS patient health information site NHS Choices. Both the highest and the lowest websites were accredited by The Information Standard.

The report recommends that GPs use both the Map of Medicine and the BTA sites as education tools on tinnitus, or more simply, to use the good practice guide on tinnitus produced by the Department of Health.

The research will also offer valuable information for websites providing information on tinnitus on how they can improve their service and Action on Hearing Loss has already gathered the preliminary findings to be incorporated into a forthcoming overhaul of its website.

The research was conducted by Miss Kathryn Fackrell (Nottingham Trent University), Dr Derek Hoare, Mrs Sandra Smith and Dr Abby McCormack (The University of Nottingham and the NIHR National Biomedical Research Unit in Hearing) and Professor Deborah Hall (Nottingham Trent University and the NIHR National Biomedical Research Unit in Hearing).

Support and funding for the research came from Action on Hearing Loss and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Unit Programme.

A copy of the paper is available to view online at www.biomedcentral.com/content/pdf/1472-6947-12-70.pdf

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)


Related Tinnitus Current Events and Tinnitus News Articles


Reports suggest osteopathic manipulative treatment resolves concussion symptoms
Two case reports published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association document improvements in concussion-related symptoms following an initial session of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT).

Pitt team identifies cause of resilience to tinnitus, potential drug therapy
Researchers have identified in an animal model the molecular mechanisms behind resilience to noise-induced tinnitus and a possible drug therapy that could reduce susceptibility to this chronic and sometimes debilitating condition.

Quiet that ringing in the brain
A new drug may treat epilepsy and prevent tinnitus by selectively affecting potassium channels in the brain, UConn neurophysiologist Anastasios Tzingounis and colleagues report in the 10 June Journal of Neuroscience.

Breakthrough in tinnitus research could lead to testable model
Tinnitus is the most common service-related disability for veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. Often described as a ringing in the ears, more than 1.5 million former service members, one out of every two combat veterans, report having this sometimes debilitating condition, resulting in more than $2 billion dollars in annual disability payments by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

High rate of ear and hearing injuries after Boston Marathon bombings
After the Boston Marathon bombings, more than 100 people were treated for trauma affecting the ears and hearing--with many having persistent or worsening hearing loss or other symptoms.

Self-reported cognitive difficulties better for patients with tinnitus in clinical trial
Using the medication D-cycloserine in conjunction with a computer-assisted cognitive training (CT) program to try to improve the bother of tinnitus (persistent ringing in the ears) and its related cognitive difficulties was no more effective than placebo at relieving the bother of the annoying condition although self-reported cognitive deficits improved.

Novel tinnitus therapy helps patients cope with phantom noise
Patients with tinnitus hear phantom noise and are sometimes so bothered by the perceived ringing in their ears, they have difficulty concentrating.

Aberrant PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway found in vestibular schwanommas may be therapeutic target
Researchers from the University of Toronto, directed by Drs. Gelareh Zadeh and Boris Krischek, investigated gene expression in normal vestibular nerves and vestibular schwannomas (VSs).

Visualising plastic changes to the brain
Tinnitus, migraine, epilepsy, depression, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's: all these are examples of diseases with neurological causes, the treatment and study of which is more and more frequently being carried out by means of magnetic stimulation of the brain.

Caffeine intake associated with lower incidence of tinnitus
New research from Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) finds that higher caffeine intake is associated with lower rates of tinnitus, often described as a ringing or buzzing sound in the ear when there is no outside source of the sounds, in younger and middle-aged women.
More Tinnitus Current Events and Tinnitus News Articles

Tinnitus, From Tyrant to Friend: How to Let Go of Ringing in your Ears by Mr Julian Cowan Hill (2015-04-01)

Tinnitus, From Tyrant to Friend: How to Let Go of Ringing in your Ears by Mr Julian Cowan Hill (2015-04-01)
by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (Publisher)




Tinnitus No More: The Complete Guide On Tinnitus Symptoms, Causes, Treatments, & Natural Tinnitus Remedies to Get Rid of Ringing in Ears Once and for All

Tinnitus No More: The Complete Guide On Tinnitus Symptoms, Causes, Treatments, & Natural Tinnitus Remedies to Get Rid of Ringing in Ears Once and for All
by Brian M. Lawrence (Author)


Tinnitus symptoms can range from annoying to stressful to downright disabling. If you have tinnitus, it is usually something you are desperate to get rid of. Tinnitus, quite frankly hasn’t taken up a lot of room when it comes to research on the various treatments medicine has to offer those with tinnitus. This is partly because doctors don’t know the cause of many cases of tinnitus and because the known causes of tinnitus are many. This means that, in traditional medicine, there are few options for treatment with the exception of some neural medications, anxiety medications and antidepressants that can make a difference in those who have tinnitus. Some of the best ways to manage tinnitus is through alternative and natural remedies. This is where "Tinnitus No More" can help. In...

Tinnitus: Effective Treatments For Permanent Tinnitus Relief - How To Stop Ear Ringing With Natural Remedies! (Tinnitus Miracle, Tinnitus Cure, Hearing Loss)

Tinnitus: Effective Treatments For Permanent Tinnitus Relief - How To Stop Ear Ringing With Natural Remedies! (Tinnitus Miracle, Tinnitus Cure, Hearing Loss)
by Samantha Lang (Author)


Tinnitus Effective Treatments For Permanent Tinnitus Relief - How To Stop Ear Ringing With Natural Remedies! If you want to learn to cure your persistent tinnitus without typical medical treatments, drugs or surgery, and without having to deal with the side effects of these intervention tactics, look no further! This book will help to break you free from the constant presence of tinnitus noise. Here is what you’ll learn in this priceless e-book:Recognizing tinnitusCuring tinnitus the natural wayResearch that experts have known for years, but which are new to patientsDiet changes that will help to cure tinnitusUnderstanding the ways tinnitus affects you and how to “turn the sound off”Proven, time-tested, non-drug strategies to treat tinnitusWhen you really do need to seek out...

Tinnitus, From Tyrant to Friend: How to Let Go of Ringing in your Ears

Tinnitus, From Tyrant to Friend: How to Let Go of Ringing in your Ears
by Mr Julian Cowan Hill (Author)


How to let go of tinnitus the natural way. This guide shares practical advice on how to build up a support network and charts the progress you make as you recover from tinnitus. Julian Cowan Hill made a complete recovery from tinnitus after 20 years of severe symptoms, and having worked with over 600 clients in his practice based in central London, shares techniques and approaches that have helped many get better.

Tinnitus STOP! - The Complete Guide On Ringing In The Ears, Natural Tinnitus Remedies, And A Holistic System For Permanent Tinnitus Relief

Tinnitus STOP! - The Complete Guide On Ringing In The Ears, Natural Tinnitus Remedies, And A Holistic System For Permanent Tinnitus Relief
by Annette P. Price (Author)


Are you suffering from ringing in the ears, or a medical term called Tinnitus? Do you know the causes of the ringing sound? Are you desperately needing to know how to stop it? Tinnitus in itself is not a disease; rather it is a symptom of an underlying condition and will often require extensive testing to locate the source of discomfort. In some instances, simple lifestyle changes can minimize the inner noises or make them totally disappear. In the cases where an underlying medical condition has been determined, appropriate treatment will follow and allow the patient a reprieve from the Tinnitus. Treatment can range from changing your diet, to taking medications or undergoing surgery. For many patients, a combination of traditional medical and holistic treatments will assist them in...

Tinnitus: Turning the Volume Down (Revised & Expanded)

Tinnitus: Turning the Volume Down (Revised & Expanded)
by Kevin Hogan (Author), Jennifer Battaglino (Author)


Over 50 million Americans experience some form of tinnitus and there are those who don't realize that the ringing in their ears has a name. Of those 50 million, 12 million are estimated to have severe tinnitus where they seek medical treatment. Approximately two million people are suffering so severely that they cannot make it through their daily activities.

Kevin Hogan has a positive approach to health as a definite goal worthy of determination. Kevin experienced tinnitus, and partly because of this, he treats those who suffer from it with respect!

He heard the usual, You have to live with it, and he does NOT live with it. In addition he has remolded his profession to help those with tinnitus. This book is a positive example, a helping hand, a light in the darkness....

Tinnitus: Tinnitus Treatment Solutions - How To Cure Tinnitus And Get Instant Relief! (Tinnitus Miracle, Tinnitus Cure, Hearing Loss)

Tinnitus: Tinnitus Treatment Solutions - How To Cure Tinnitus And Get Instant Relief! (Tinnitus Miracle, Tinnitus Cure, Hearing Loss)
by Lydia Perkins (Author)


Tinnitus Tinnitus Treatment Solutions - How To Cure Tinnitus And Get Instant Relief! Do you ever get a ringing in your ears after going to a concert or listening to loud music on your IPod or other devices? How about working on machines or with power tools? Do you use protection to save your hearing? If you are like most of us we don’t think about our ears or our hearing. We just assume that we will always hear and these noise that we experience are just a part of life. This is not the case, however. Out hearing is just like anything else in our body, it need to be taken care of or we could lose it. One condition that many of us suffer from is called tinnitus. Tinnitus is a condition that results in the constant bussing or ringing in our ears. This condition is caused by a...

I Can Live With My Tinnitus: A Survival Guide For Tinnitus Sufferers

I Can Live With My Tinnitus: A Survival Guide For Tinnitus Sufferers


Tinnitus affects more than 50 million people in the United States alone. Some find it simply a nuisance and are, for the most part, able to ignore it; while others are so distressed it often drives them to depression or thoughts of suicide. More than 10 million people seek medical help for severe tinnitus every year.
Roger Bray developed tinnitus in June of 2002. During his battle, he read hundreds of articles, saw many doctors, had numerous tests, tried various prescription drugs and over the counter cures. He studied the inner ear and researched all the claims to tinnitus cures that he could find.
During his battle, he began to realize that it was the fight that was beating him, not the tinnitus. It was then that he decided to take back his life and not allow it to be...

Tinnitus: Tinnitus Treatment Relief -Learn How To Restore Your Hearing With Natural Homemade Remedies And Treatments! (Hearing Loss Cure, Tinnitus Treatment, Stop Ear Ringing)

Tinnitus: Tinnitus Treatment Relief -Learn How To Restore Your Hearing With Natural Homemade Remedies And Treatments! (Hearing Loss Cure, Tinnitus Treatment, Stop Ear Ringing)
by Sophia Hudson (Author)


Tinnitus Tinnitus Treatment Relief -Learn How To Restore Your Hearing With Natural Homemade Remedies And Treatments! Tinnitus is an ailment affecting 10-15% of the world population at any given time and is often a symptom of a larger problem. The underlying causes of tinnitus are varied and often difficult to determine, but if you’re suffering from the clicks and ringing of tinnitus, all you care about is finding relief. Tinnitus is not always curable, but it is manageable. Utilizing the methods outlined in this book, you, too, can find relief from your tinnitus symptoms and get back to a distraction-free life. Here is a preview of what you'll learn:Identify the source of your tinnitus and the best path to relieve your symptomsUse time-tested herbal remedies to reduce or eliminate...

Tinnitus: How To Cure Tinnitus With Effective And Simple Treatments - Stop Ear Ringing And Restore Your Hearing Naturally! (tinnitus miracle, tinnitus relief, Hearing Loss)

Tinnitus: How To Cure Tinnitus With Effective And Simple Treatments - Stop Ear Ringing And Restore Your Hearing Naturally! (tinnitus miracle, tinnitus relief, Hearing Loss)


Tinnitus

How To Cure Tinnitus With Effective And Simple Treatments - Stop Ear Ringing And Restore Your Hearing Naturally!

It is a sad fact but many people in our world are suffering from tinnitus. They are afraid that there is something seriously wrong with them or that they will never get any relief but they are wrong.

Tinnitus although very aggravating is rarely a symptom of a deeper serious issue. In fact, it is a very mild issue even though it can cause a lot of stress in people’s lives.

Maybe you have been to the doctor and have been told that there is nothing that they can do for you. Maybe they have told you that you just have to wait and see what happens. Or maybe you have not been to the doctor because you understand that there...

© 2016 BrightSurf.com