Objective To assess the effect of Ginkgo biloba and clonazepam, a γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-receptor agonist, upon tinnitus.
Methods This was an open-label, randomised, crossover study. 27 men and 11 women (aged 16–80 (mean 58)) with tinnitus for more than 2 months were enrolled. Participants were randomised to either clonazepam or G biloba for the first 3 weeks. For the next 2 weeks of washout no medication was taken. For the final 3 weeks, subjects were given the other drug. The initial dose of clonazepam and G biloba was one tablet daily (clonazepam 0.5 mg; G biloba 40 mg). Subjects were instructed to increase the dose by one tablet every 3 days to a maximum of four tablets daily until they perceived a satisfactory decrease in tinnitus loudness or intolerable side effects. Tinnitus was assessed with pitch and loudness matching, tinnitus handicap inventory, and visual analogue scales of loudness, duration and annoyance.
Results Comparing before and after each drug, clonazepam significantly improved tinnitus loudness (74% of subjects), duration (63%), annoyance (79%), and tinnitus handicap inventory score (61%), whereas the G biloba showed no significant differences on any of these measures.
Conclusion Clonazepam is effective in treating tinnitus; G biloba is ineffective.
- Ginkgo biloba
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See Editorial commentary, p 765
Linked article 302823.
Funding This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation (NRF) of Korea funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (2011-0006602).
Competing interests None.
Patient consent Obtained.
Ethics approval Ethics approval was provided by the review board and the ethics committee of Kangwon National University Hospital, Korea.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.