Neuromodulation and Applied Neuroplasticity

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How does tinnitus affect speech understanding?

People suffering from tinnitus often report problems understanding speech in a noisy environment. Some studies have already confirmed that this is particularly difficult for people with tinnitus. A noisy environment is part of most people's everyday life. Whether in a restaurant or on the street, background noise makes it difficult to understand spoken speech, especially with increasing age and hearing loss. In a current study, we use electroencephalography (EEG), hearing and behavior tests to find out to what extent various factors such as tinnitus, hearing loss and cognition (e.g. attention-grabbing ability) are involved in understanding language and interact with each other.

Project status: ongoing
Contact: Titularprofessor Dr. Martin Meyer

 

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Tomographic neurofeedback interventions in elderly patients with chronic tinnitus

Chronic tinnitus is a hearing sensation that is not triggered by an external acoustic signal, but is caused by self-activation of the hearing system and is perceived by those affected as a real, often extremely stressful noise. We use neurofeedback to overwrite the anomal neural signatures that are associated with tinnitus perception.Through the innovative method of tomographic neurofeedback, the cortical regions that have been specifically marked by the combination of neurofeedback with the EEG source estimation methods can be targeted and their activity specifically modified.

Project status: ongoing
Contact: Titularprofessor Dr. Martin Meyer

 

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Neuromodulation interventions in patients with chronic tinnitus

In addition to acoustic stimulation and neurofeedback, active brain stimulation (neuromodulation) at the head surface is proposed as a third effective method for alleviating chronic tinnitus. A considerable number of studies have already been carried out using various approaches to transcranial magnetic stimulation and transcranial electrical stimulation (weak, barely perceptible and harmless currents) - with different and sometimes contradictory results. The success of the treatment seemed to depend strongly on the selected tinnitus subtypes as well as the stimulation protocols and assemblies. In an ongoing study, we are therefore testing the effectiveness of an innovative protocol based on an established tinnitus network model of the brain. We expect to attenuate the progressive chronification of tinnitus in people who have not been suffering from tinnitus for a long time.

Project status: ongoing
Contact: Titularprofessor Dr. Martin Meyer

 

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Speech intelligibility and perception in older adults at the interaction of aging, cognition, tinnitus, and hearing loss

This research project uses imaging, behavioral and audiometric methods to investigate to what extent speech processing is impaired in people with various forms of hearing loss and chronic subjective tinnitus. In particular the investigation of central hearing loss is focused. We combine structural MRI, behavioral and audiometric measurements and electroencephalography. The efficiency of a multisensory language training for the hearing impaired will also be evaluated.

Project status: ongoing
Contact: Titularprofessor Dr. Martin Meyer

 

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The importance of spectral and temporal information for the processing of speech depending on age-related hearing loss

Decreasing integrity and functioning of the auditory system results in problems in understanding spoken language and, as a consequence, in difficulties in participating in conversations and in a reduced quality of life. In addition, the probability of hearing loss inevitably increases with age. The focus here is on the changes in the processing of acoustic information across the lifespan as a function of the aging brain.

Project status: completed in 2018
Contact: Titularprofessor Dr. Martin Meyer