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More' quality of life despite tinnitus!

The joint platform of the Obwalden Cantonal Hospital and Swisstinnitus AG for competent, interdisciplinary care based on the latest scientific research, which was launched a good two years ago as a 'lighthouse project', has developed very positively.

Swisstinnitus AG is an enterprise of Prof. Dr. med. Markus Pfister, ear, nose and throat specialist with a practice in Sarnen. The specialist, who is also internationally active in teaching and research, has been working as an attending physician at KSOW for several years. Together with the KSOW, the long-term goal of a unique interdisciplinary tinnitus competence centre in Sarnen is being worked on.

Several tens of thousands of people in Switzerland are probably currently waiting for a tinnitus therapy that stops or at least reduces the whistling, ringing, hissing or buzzing in their head. According to the Swiss Tinnitus League, about 4% of all adults suffer from the noises that have accompanied them for at least 3 months. Prof. Pfister was able to welcome more than 250 sufferers and interested parties to his popular medicine lecture on 'Tinnitus - when the ear cries out!

Background to tinnitus
Ringing in the ears (tinnitus) is a symptom that has a wide variety of causes and can basically accompany almost any ear disease. Inflammatory, tumorous and medicinal-toxic causes, mechanical and acoustic trauma can also lead to tinnitus, as can cardiovascular or metabolic diseases. The character of the ringing in the ears (for example, beeping, hissing, noise) and the intensity of the tinnitus (barely audible to extremely loud) are described very differently by those affected and only rarely allow conclusions to be drawn about the underlying cause.

Cooperation right at the beginning
In the case of acute tinnitus, treatment should begin as soon as possible, i.e. within the first 72 hours after the onset of the symptoms described above. The drug therapy of an acute tinnitus is similar to the therapy of a hearing loss and is guaranteed by the locally established primary care as well as the emergency service at the Cantonal Hospital Obwalden.
A detailed analysis of possible causes already takes place during the acute treatment and is completed by ENT specialists as well as the interdisciplinary team (laboratory medicine, radiology, audiometry, psychology, hearing acoustics).

Living with tinnitus
For the treatment of chronic tinnitus (existing for longer than 3 months), outpatient psychosomatic procedures (tinnitus retraining therapy) as well as acoustic procedures are available. The aim is to train the patient to live with the sound in the ear, to turn his attention to other things, to overhear the noise. For this purpose, noise generators or tinnitus noisers are specifically programmed to the tinnitus of each individual affected person. Furthermore, patients have the opportunity to get to know newer therapy approaches (for example, music therapy, acoustic neuromodulation). These newer techniques aim to "unlearn" the tinnitus tone. This is done painlessly with targeted acoustic signals that disturb the pathological nerve cells in the auditory centre. Which technique is used must be adapted to the respective type of tinnitus. This is done through a therapy that is individually oriented to the patient.

The aim of these interdisciplinary therapy approaches is to reprogram the auditory memory, at the same time identify stress factors and positively influence them in a complementary way, either through psychological, chiromanual or relaxation therapies.

Personally oriented therapies
The common concern of this offer of Swisstinnitus AG and the Cantonal Hospital Obwalden is to offer the affected person a personally oriented therapy, whereby the patient has the possibility to carry out the necessary therapy on an outpatient basis and to test the various acoustic therapy options.
In addition to this offer, there is the possibility of clarifying both the causes of the tinnitus and/or hearing loss with the specialists on site, as well as receiving independent advice regarding hearing rehabilitation options.

Your contact persons during the consultation hours:

Swisstinnitus AG
Telephone: 041 661 25 50

Outside consultation hours:
Emergency ward of the Obwalden Cantonal Hospital Telephone 041 666 41 20

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