Coronavirus Special: Tinnitus in Times of Quarantine

This episode is quite different than what we’ve done before. You’ll hear from four people with tinnitus about how the current situation, being quarantined, has affected their lives and their tinnitus. One of these people was infected with the Coronavirus and describes how it affected his entire family and impacted his tinnitus.

We also spoke with a researcher, Raj Shekhawat, about how the crisis has affected tinnitus research because of clinical trials being stalled. And we spoke with Alan Hopkirk, an audiologist who has now shifted his patient support efforts completely online.

Through this compilation episode, we are aiming to connect with all of you out there who are feeling isolated!

Healing Hearing, Silencing Tinnitus? - Hough Ear Institute

Tinnitus Talk spoke with the Hough Ear Institute, a non-profit research organization that focusses on restoring hearing. They are working on two hearing regeneration treatments that could very well have benefits for tinnitus sufferers.

In this episode, we spoke with Dr. Richard Kopke and Justin DeMoss. They explain the mechanisms behind their treatments and how hearing restoration can be achieved. They take us through the different phases of research and development required to get new drugs to market, and some of the challenges faced along the way. Of course, we also touch on the topic of whether restoring hearing could cure tinnitus.

The episode includes an announcement about an exciting new partnership with pharmaceutical company Oblato to take Hough’s hearing loss pill through the next phases of clinical trial and assess its potential for tinnitus.

Transforming Hyperacusis Research - Bryan Pollard

Tinnitus Talk spoke with Bryan Pollard, the president of Hyperacusis Research Limited, based in Boston. Bryan himself suffers from hyperacusis, which he believes is due to sound exposure from a loud woodchipper several years ago.

In this episode, Bryan talks about his personal experience with hyperacusis, and how this drove him to start Hyperacusis Research to raise funds for scientific research.

We spoke about the concept of pain hyperacusis and how it only recently became recognized due to the scientific breakthrough proving that the cochlea has pain receptors. Bryan also gives advice to hyperacusis patients regarding treatment options. And of course, we spoke about the most exciting new research developments.

Neuromod’s Lenire - Treating Tinnitus the Bimodal Way

It’s been the talk of the town on the Tinnitus Talk forum for the past few months: the launch of Neuromod’s Lenire treatment for tinnitus. We got a chance to sit down with their CEO Dr. Ross O’Neill and ask him everything (well, nearly) you want to know about this device.

It’s an extra-long episode, because so many questions were raised on our forum about Lenire – the thread has been viewed over half a million times – that we felt we needed to do our best to gather as many answers as possible.

In the episode, Hazel and Ross talk about the basic principles of the treatment, its effectiveness, and risks. We also covered clinical trial results and go in-depth on what the treatment actually looks like. We clarify whom Lenire is suitable for, and Ross makes some projections about future roll-out of the device.

Clinical Guidelines for Tinnitus - Status Quo or Way Forward?

What is the current state of evidence in favour or against tinnitus treatments on the market? Which treatments have been thoroughly tested and which require more testing? What should doctors and patients learn from this? And how should this inform new tinnitus research? These are all questions answered in this episode!

Tinnitus Talk spoke with Rilana Cima and Derek Hoare, two of the co-authors of the European Clinical Practice Guidelines for Tinnitus, which were published earlier this year. Clinical Guidelines are recommendations for healthcare professionals on how to diagnose and treat a medical condition, based on currently available evidence.

The episode makes clear that the vast majority of treatments currently on the market have not been sufficiently studied to tell one way or the other how effective and safe they are. There is a dire lack of thorough clinical trial data available, which severely hinders clinical management of tinnitus. Doctors are often not aware of different treatment options, and patients have to find their own way through the system.

If you are currently seeking medical treatment for tinnitus, make sure you are aware of any relevant Clinical Guidelines.

Hearing In, Tinnitus Out - Prof. Marcelo Rivolta

What are stem cells and how can stem cells treat hearing loss? What’s going on with human trials for hearing regeneration? When can we expected new treatments on the market? And will regenerating hearing resolve tinnitus? These kinds of questions will be answered in this podcast!

Tinnitus Talk spoke with Marcelo Rivolta, professor of Sensory Stem Cell Biology at the University of Sheffield. He explains the basic concepts of stem cells and the different approaches to hearing regeneration. It’s fascinating science, but there are a number of roadblocks to be cleared before patients can benefit.

Marcelo also announces that he received a research grant and used it to start a biotechnology company called Rinri. If you want to stay up to date with the progress of Rinri, please visit

The interview with Marcelo was conducted by Steve Harrison (Tinnitus Talk) and David Stockdale (British Tinnitus Association). As added bonus material at the end, Hazel and Markku discuss the Tinnitus Talk podcast ‘behind the scenes.’

Visit the official Tinnitus Talk Podcast at


Tinnitus Management: Who Cares? - Richard Tyler, PhD

How can clinicians and patients work together? Why is tinnitus sub-typing important? Does loudness matter? What does habituation really mean? What different forms of counselling and treatment are available for tinnitus? These are some of the questions addressed in this episode.

Tinnitus Talk spoke with Richard Tyler, from the University of Iowa. His career in tinnitus spans many decades. He has vast experience in both tinnitus research and patient care and is passionate about connecting those two worlds.

Richard also talks about the annual conference on tinnitus management that he is organising this year for the 27th time in Iowa. The conference is open to patients.

Visit the official Tinnitus Talk Podcast at

Tinnitus, The Musician’s Curse? - CJ Wildheart

How do musicians deal with the fact that they are especially prone to getting tinnitus? Is there enough awareness on this? These are some of the questions addressed in this episode. 

Tinnitus Talk spoke with CJ Wildheart, professional rock musician with tinnitus, and guitarist for The Wildhearts. He talks candidly about how live and loud playing for many years caused his tinnitus, how this has affected his musical career, and the care he now takes to protect his ears. 

We were lucky to have Ed (known as Ed209 on the Tinnitus Talk support forum) arrange and conduct the interview with CJ. Ed is himself a professional music teacher, and in the second half of this episode, our podcast host Sean spoke with him about his personal experiences, musicians and tinnitus, and questions around noise protection. 

Visit the official Tinnitus Talk Podcast at

A World Without Tinnitus - David Stockdale (British Tinnitus Association)

Tinnitus Talk spoke with David Stockdale, the chief executive of the British Tinnitus Association (BTA). We’re very excited to have David on for episode 2 of our podcast series!

David frequently visits and engages with the tinnitus community through us and other channels. His dedication and drive to represent the needs of the community clearly shines through in this interview.

David talks about his drive to accomplish the BTA’s vision: “A world where no one suffers from tinnitus.” We also addressed questions like: How can tinnitus associations move the research field forward? How do they convey the tinnitus experience to the broader public? What are the pros and cons of promoting certain treatments?

Visit the official Tinnitus Talk Podcast at

In Search of a Tinnitus Cure - Dr. Josef Rauschecker

Tinnitus Talk spoke with Dr. Rauschecker, one of most eminent researchers on tinnitus. We’re excited to launch our podcast series with this highly engaging interview, a must for anyone who wants to understand how tinnitus works in the brain and how we can get to a cure.

The interview covers a range of topics, from Dr. Rauschecker’s own experience with tinnitus to his theories on how tinnitus manifests in the brain and links with other brain disorders like depression. We also talked about the dire lack of funding for (cure focused) tinnitus research, and the role that patient communities can play in resolving this.

Visit the official Tinnitus Talk Podcast at

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