About TRI Tinnitus Research Initiative – Tapei
The 12th Tinnitus Research Initiative conference took place between May 17 to 19, 2019 in Taipei, Taiwan. This was the first TRI conference held in Asia and it benefited from the additional Oriental input. TRI has a tradition of providing a cutting-edge platform for researchers and practitioners from a wide variety of backgrounds. The main theme of this year’s conference was “A Renaissance: Novel Concepts in Tinnitus”, and dealt with a diverse range of fascinating and challenging aspects of tinnitus. The event was extremely well organised and attended (450 delegates from 30 countries including a handful from the UK). This contributed to a hugely successful conference.
Why Did We Attend TRI?
Alan Hopkirk, Clinical Director of The Invisible Hearing Clinic attended the 12th TRI Tinnitus Research Initiative conference and was very clear on his reasons for attending. Even when you have years of experience in tinnitus treatment it’s important to realise that there is still much more to understand and fine-tune.
“It is a long way to travel, but I feel I owe it to my patients to always be at the cutting edge of research and new or refined treatments for Tinnitus & Hyperacusis. It’s exciting that our understanding is evolving and even subtle improvements in treatment can make a big difference to individual patients’ lives! The opportunity to network with fellow international researchers and practitioners is invaluable both in re-affirming our own practice, but also enhancing it with insight from others.”
Key Researchers at TRI Tinnitus Research Initiative
As probably the foremost tinnitus event, TRI attracts the great and good in this field. The participants are too numerous to mention, we have therefore focused on some of those researchers with whom Invizear have previous knowledge or association.
Professors Margaret and Pawel Jastreboff
The Jastreboffs have spent much of their adult lives as researchers, but they are also leading clinicians. Professor Jastreboff’s animal model helped him to create the neurophysiological model for tinnitus. At this point, he looked for ways to implement his theories in clinical practice. Out of that work came Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT) which also forms the basis of many tinnitus treatment protocols in leading private practices, including our own.
Alan Hopkirk was delighted to spend time with Margaret & Pawel Jastreboff. He trained with them in Baltimore USA on TRT (Tinnitus Retraining Therapy) and has the greatest respect for their work.
The couple spoke on the subject of Misophonia, a strong aversion or dislike of certain sounds. They compared the treatment of Tinnitus, Hyperacusis and Misophonia and also looked for commonalities.
Professor Josef Rauschecker
Dr Rauschecker’s research interests are concerned with the central nervous system. His work has lead to a deeper understanding of brain function in conditions such as autism, dyslexia and of course tinnitus. His studies of brain plasticity have helped with work on diseases of the brain, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Getting to grips with tinnitus lies in working out how the auditory and limbic systems interact to affect perception. This could be via sound, emotions or pain. Dr Rauschecker moderated the symposium on Pathophysiology. It included talks on brain changes and Tinnitus. Alan Hopkirk caught up with him and discussed how treatment could potentially reserve some of those brain changes. These opportunities of conversing with the world’s leading researchers certainly confirm the value of attending.
Dr David Baguley
Another renowned long-term researcher who has contributed massively to the field is Professor David Baguley (the principal speaker at our Tinnitus & Hearing Information Show –THIS 2019) who presented an excellent update on Tinnitus following Platinum-based Chemotherapy. He also chaired a thought-provoking session on where research is at and perhaps where it should focus on in the future. Alan was able to have interesting discussions with Professor Baguley about the journey that tinnitus research has, and is taking. It is always helpful to be able to interact with other tinnitus professionals in a slightly more relaxed setting. An extended conference always allows for better social interaction.
The opportunities to share ideas & discuss new research with others who are passionate about helping those with tinnitus are why Alan believes it’s so important and worthwhile to attend events like this. As our knowledge develops, events like TRI Tinnitus Research Initiative promote the sharing of ideas, mechanisms and protocols to develop more “focused” treatments. These include sound therapy, mindfulness, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), TRT (Tinnitus Retraining Therapy) and even Bi-modal stimulation as it evolves. The fundamental take away from the event is that there is no “one size fits all” solution.
Effective Tinnitus Treatment
Alan Hopkirk continues to provide effective treatments for those suffering from tinnitus and hyperacusis. We are, above all, striving to make those treatments even more effective and fast-acting. Maintaining an openness to treatment variations is in many ways the secret of our success. Finally, are you struggling with tinnitus? If so, you can be confident in the knowledge, experience and compassion from Alan and his team at Invizear. Call us now on 0141 226 2268 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.