Cord B. Sengstake

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Psychology



Physical Description

2, vii, 89 leaves: ill. 28 cm.


Psychotherapy, Hearing disorders -- Psychological aspects




A short form of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory was administered to 146 clinical patients who suffered from either tinnitus or a hearing disorder or both. Patients were assigned to four groups on the basis of their subjective complaint and their audiometric report: patients with tinnitus only, patients with tinnitus and a hearing loss where the tinnitus was the primary complaint, patients with tinnitus and a hearing loss where the hearing loss was the primary complaint, and patients who had a hearing loss but no tinnitus. The purpose of the study was to determine whether there were certain measurable personality characteristics unique to the tinnitus patient. The results indicated elevations for all four groups on some combination of Scales 8, 6, 3, and 2. The differences obtained were significant between those groups who suffered from tinnitus as opposed to those whose primary complaint was a hearing loss. The tinnitus patients had social adjustment problems that were not evidenced for patients with hearing impairment. This finding was especially true for patients whose only problem was tinnitus. It appears that for those patients with both a hearing loss and tinnitus the scores are less elevated, indicating that the patient who has had a hearing loss for a period of time is better able to cope with the tinnitus than the patient who is suddenly and unaccountably afflicted with tinnitus. Thus, it is reasonable to conclude that the MMPI can be used as an instrument to differentiate between the tinnitus versus the hearing loss patient.


Portland State University. Dept. of Psychology.

Persistent Identifier