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On the relationship between tinnitus distress, cognitive performance and aging


Brueggemann, Petra; Neff, Patrick; Meyer, Martin; Riemer, Natalie; Rose, Matthias; Mazurek, Birgit (2021). On the relationship between tinnitus distress, cognitive performance and aging. Progress in Brain Research, 262:263-285.

Abstract

In this study we analyzed psychometric data of 107 individuals who suffer from chronic subjective tinnitus. In particular, we elucidated the relationship between tinnitus-related distress, psychological comorbidities, age, and hearing, and the performance in cognitive concentration and interference tests. Previous research has provided first evidence that individuals with tinnitus may have deficits in cognitive tasks. The present study aimed at extending former research by investigating the relationship between tinnitus distress and cognition. Statistical analyses comprised correlation and regression approaches. We observed a significant relationship between tinnitus distress (tinnitus score, TQ), age and hearing loss and the performance in tests on selective and sustained attention (d2 test) and cognitive interference (Stroop test). Tinnitus distress was identified as the most important predictor of cognitive performance (additionally age for cognitive interference). For other psychometric variables (perceived stress, PSQ; self-efficacy, optimism and pessimism, SWOP) and hearing loss we could not find any meaningful relationship with cognitive performance. The results clearly point to a (currently non-causal) relationship between cognitive skills and distress of tinnitus-related symptoms. Furthermore, the influence of age is noteworthy as this finding implies that with increasing age an appropriate coping with aversive tinnitus symptoms based on proper cognitive functions and age-related hearing dysfunctions, namely inhibition, may become more difficult. Hence, it is suggested to consider cognitive tests as a supplementary measurement in clinical assessment of tinnitus and to raise awareness for the impairing influence of tinnitus on cognition in daily life.

Abstract

In this study we analyzed psychometric data of 107 individuals who suffer from chronic subjective tinnitus. In particular, we elucidated the relationship between tinnitus-related distress, psychological comorbidities, age, and hearing, and the performance in cognitive concentration and interference tests. Previous research has provided first evidence that individuals with tinnitus may have deficits in cognitive tasks. The present study aimed at extending former research by investigating the relationship between tinnitus distress and cognition. Statistical analyses comprised correlation and regression approaches. We observed a significant relationship between tinnitus distress (tinnitus score, TQ), age and hearing loss and the performance in tests on selective and sustained attention (d2 test) and cognitive interference (Stroop test). Tinnitus distress was identified as the most important predictor of cognitive performance (additionally age for cognitive interference). For other psychometric variables (perceived stress, PSQ; self-efficacy, optimism and pessimism, SWOP) and hearing loss we could not find any meaningful relationship with cognitive performance. The results clearly point to a (currently non-causal) relationship between cognitive skills and distress of tinnitus-related symptoms. Furthermore, the influence of age is noteworthy as this finding implies that with increasing age an appropriate coping with aversive tinnitus symptoms based on proper cognitive functions and age-related hearing dysfunctions, namely inhibition, may become more difficult. Hence, it is suggested to consider cognitive tests as a supplementary measurement in clinical assessment of tinnitus and to raise awareness for the impairing influence of tinnitus on cognition in daily life.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
08 Research Priority Programs > Dynamics of Healthy Aging
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > General Neuroscience
Language:English
Date:2021
Deposited On:18 May 2021 12:55
Last Modified:19 May 2021 20:00
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0079-6123
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/bs.pbr.2021.01.028
PubMed ID:33931184

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