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An evaluation of the Reltus ear massager for short-term tinnitus relief
Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
University of Auckland, New Zealand.
University of Auckland, New Zealand.
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2016 (English)In: International Journal of Audiology, ISSN 1499-2027, E-ISSN 1708-8186, Vol. 55, no 1, 38-44 p.Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Abstract [en]

Objective: Auditory stimulation has been shown to suppress the loudness of tinnitus (residual inhibition, RI). Somatosensory manipulations have also been shown to sometimes decrease tinnitus perception. An ear-massaging device, the Reltus (, has been marketed as a tinnitus treatment device. This study was undertaken to evaluate its short-term effectiveness and mode of effect. Design: The research was undertaken in two phases. Phase 1 measured the change in tinnitus perception after one minute of auditory stimulation through headphones and after application of a vibrating device to four different stimulation points around the pinna for one minute each. Phase 2 evaluated if it was the vibrations that were responsible for the effect on tinnitus perception, or sound produced by the vibrator. Study sample: Twenty-three participants completed phase 1 and 10 participants participated in the second phase. Results: RI to auditory stimulation was found in 87% of participants and to tactile stimulation in 83%. No significant differences were found in the effectiveness between the four vibration stimulation points, or between the left and right ear of the participants. The Reltus produced a sound that resulted in RI. Conclusions: It is the auditory artifact of the Reltus that was responsible for short-term tinnitus suppression.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD , 2016. Vol. 55, no 1, 38-44 p.
Keyword [en]
Tinnitus; residual inhibition; vibration; treatment
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-124093DOI: 10.3109/14992027.2015.1077532ISI: 000365589500005PubMedID: 26406286OAI: diva2:897216

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Available from: 2016-01-25 Created: 2016-01-19 Last updated: 2016-02-16

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