In my first few months working with the BTA, I have met with many people who are living with tinnitus. I have also completed the BTA training course to become a tinnitus adviser. These activities have helped me to develop an understanding of the different ways in which people experience and live with tinnitus. I am eager to hear more about what it is like to live with tinnitus and I am looking forward to working with you, our members, on our new research project.

This project is a collaboration between the BTA and Dr Derek Hoare at the University of Nottingham. Together we have secured funding from The Royal British Legion from the Aged Veterans Fund, funded by the Chancellor using LIBOR funds to explore the impact of tinnitus on UK military veterans who have tinnitus and were born before 1st January 1950.

The Aged Veterans Fund was set up to help aged ex-service personnel who need health-related support or who have social care needs. Our research will highlight any tinnitus support that is currently available specifically for aged veterans and make recommendations for future support based on the needs of veterans who have tinnitus.

Most previous research exploring veterans with tinnitus has been done in the US, from which we know that tinnitus is prevalent amongst those who have served in the American Armed Forces.

Ageing increases the risk of hearing loss, which can be a factor in experiencing tinnitus. We hope to use the findings from our research to suggest recommendations that positively influence the support received by current and future veterans of the UK Armed Forces.

Since the last update, we have decided on what steps we need to take to find out how tinnitus impacts on the lives’ of aged veterans in the UK. We have discussed the project plan at a number of events including:

  • the Pensioner’s Parliament event in Blackpool, where we gained lots interest about the project
  • a meeting at The Royal British Legion HQ
  • and at academic events at the University of Nottingham and King’s College London where we have had input from leading academics in Health and Hearing Sciences research.

We welcome any suggestions so please let us know your ideas about how to let aged veterans know that they can take part in this research. Or, if you know any organisations who work with aged veterans please tell them about this project. The more veterans we hear from the clearer the picture will be of how tinnitus impacts on their lives.

A research ethics committee at the University of Nottingham Medical School have assessed our plan and have given the research the go-ahead. This means we can now ask aged veterans to complete our questionnaire (this should take no longer than 10 minutes). People who we want to take part are people who:

  • have served at least one day in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces (British Armed Forces). This includes surviving World War 2 veterans, those who undertook National Service and other voluntary enlisted veterans
  • have experienced tinnitus
  • were born before 1st January 1950 (currently 68 years young!)
  • are a permanent resident in the UK.

If this describes you, or a family member or friend, and you would like further information about how to be involved in this research please contact me on [email protected] or 0114 250 9933.

If you fit the criteria above and would like to complete the questionnaire you will find the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/XYT8KTD

If you would prefer to fill in a paper copy of the questionnaire, you can download it here:

Aged_veterans_with_tinnitus_questionnaire-_paper_version.docx

Alternatively, we can post a paper copy to you - please contact me on [email protected] or call 0114 250 9933.

Please read the participant information before completing the study.

Many thanks for reading about the project and to those of you who have already been in touch to register your interest - we really do appreciate it because without you this important research would not happen! I look forward to hearing from you soon!