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By Grant Donald Searchfield


Tinnitus is an interaction of the environment, cognition and plasticity. The connection between the individual with tinnitus and their world seldom receives attention in neurophysiological research. As well as changes in cell excitability, an individual’s culture and beliefs, work and social environs may all influence how tinnitus is perceived. In this review an ecological framework for current neurophysiological evidence is considered. The model defines tinnitus as the perception of an auditory object in the absence of an acoustic event. It is hypothesized that following deafferentation: adaptive feature extraction, schema and semantic object formation processes lead to tinnitus in a manner predicted by Adaptation Level Theory (1, 2). Evidence from physiological studies are compared to the tenants of the proposed ecological model. The consideration of diverse events within an ecological context may unite seemingly disparate neurophysiological models

Topics: Attention, Ecology, Tinnitus, adaptation, Model, Psychoacoustics, Neurology. Diseases of the nervous system, RC346-429
Publisher: Frontiers Media S.A.
Year: 2014
DOI identifier: 10.3389/fneur.2014.00271
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