Psychosomatische belastungsfaktoren bei kompensiertem und dekompensiertem tinnitus

Translated title of the contribution: Psychosomatic stress factors in compensated and decompensated tinnitus

Corinna Stobik, Rainer K. Weber, Thomas F. Münte, Jörg Frommer*

*Corresponding author for this work
25 Citations (Scopus)


Aims: In modern medical practice, chronic decompensated tinnitus is defined as a complex psychosomatic process in which mental and social factors are considered to have a determining effect on the patient's subjective response to the impairment of otological or other somatic functions attributed to tinnitus. What is still largely unknown is the interaction of the individual factors and their impact on the patient's ability to cope with tinnitus. The impact of psycho-social and somatic factors on the subjective experience of patients with compensated and decompensated tinnitus is evaluated. Patients and methods: 53 patients with chronic tinnitus were divided into two groups, compensated and clecompensatecl, on the basis of their subjective experience of the disorder, established according to the tinnitus questionnaire published by Goebel and Hiller. Self-assessment instruments and a survey of symptoms of somatic stress disorders were used to compare the two groups in terms of differences in the patients' mental and psycho-social behaviour, in their strategies for coping with tinnitus and in the incidence of co-morbidity. Results: The patients with decompensated tinnitus suffered from more pronounced mental and social disabilities, were more prone to depression and used less effective techniques to cope with their illness. The principal difference between the two groups, however, appeared to lie in a significantly higher degree of somatic multi-morbidity, where a particularly strong correlation was found between tinnitus and the incidence of cardiovascular diseases and hypacusis. 81 percent of the total sample of patients suffered from impaired hearing. Patients with decompensated tinnitus experienced greater communication difficulties as a result of their auditory impairment. Conclusions: In the diagnosis and therapy of tinnitus, in addition to psychic and psycho-social aspects greater attention ought to be paid to somatic factors, influencing the patient's ability to cope with the disorder.

Translated title of the contributionPsychosomatic stress factors in compensated and decompensated tinnitus
Original languageGerman
JournalPPmP Psychotherapie Psychosomatik Medizinische Psychologie
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)344-352
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 01.08.2003

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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