Background and Objectives: Tinnitus affects millions of adults. Many therapies, including complementary and alternative medicine and tinnitus retraining therapies, have been trialed, but an effective option, particularly for chronic subjective tinnitus (CTS), is still lacking. Materials and Methods: This study investigated the effects of alpha-lipoic acid (600 mg. per day for two months) on two groups of patients using a questionnaire. One group (A) was affected by tinnitus associated with likely cochlear dysfunction and metabolic syndrome, and the other (B) was composed of subjects with acoustic nerve lesions. All the patients were asked to complete the Italian version of the tinnitus handicap inventory (THI) to determine the overall degree of perceived annoyance at the beginning and end of therapy. Pure tone averages for speech frequencies and for high frequencies were computed, and psychoacoustic pitch and loudness matches were determined for each subject before and after treatment. Results: The pure tone audiometry, pitch, loudness, and THI scores of both groups were reported. In group A, statistically significant differences were observed for the "functional" and "emotional" subscales. The total score of THI and the loudness of tinnitus were also significantly reduced. No statistically significant differences were observed in group B. Conclusions: These findings suggest a possible contribution of the antioxidant effect to the organ of Corti in subjects with metabolic syndrome and CST.
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