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Old 05-10-2013, 06:12 AM   #1
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ETD or something else?

I've spoken to some of you about my ear fullness problem that's been going on for 4 months now. I'm able to pop my ears, but my ears remain feeling full. I do have year round allergies for which I take shots and Zyrtec and Flonase. I am so frustrated, as so far I've been told nothing is wrong with my ears/ Eustachian tubes. So far, my tympanograms (ear pressure tests) have been normal. I have been so worried over this that I've been taking klonopin 0.5mg as needed, which feels like it should be everyday. My 2 young daughters and husband are frustrated too because I'm not my usual self. I don't understand how it's possible to be able to pop your ears but still feel this horrible fullness. My drs haven't suggested any inner ear disorder testing because I have no vertigo or tinnitus. Any thoughts or advice or personal experiences are welcome.
Jen

 
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Old 05-10-2013, 03:50 PM   #2
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Re: ETD or something else?

Jen, I'm sorry you're having such an awful time. I too am having the horrible fullness today, although it's mostly my left ear. That's the one that crackles the loudest too.

Not much information on my end, but just wanted you know you're not alone.

Maybe others can offer good advice...

 
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Old 05-11-2013, 06:16 AM   #3
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Re: ETD or something else?

Hi,
This is a most unpleasant ear problem.
I have this myself at the moment but I also have a bad cold.
The ear/nose/throat are all connected and if there is a problem in one area it will/can effect the others.
Do you suffer from nasal congestion with your allergies, I do and find the pressure in the ear's really bad.
I haven't really found anything helpful for this condition, sometimes Sudafed will help other times no.
I wish you well,

Solofelix.

 
Old 05-11-2013, 07:47 AM   #4
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Re: ETD or something else?

Hi Solofelix-
Yes I do have nasal congestion due to my allergies. I know that all upper respiratory systems are connected, but I have had allergies for awhile, and not until last year did I experience ear symptoms. I have had periods of no ear symptoms despite the allergic congestion, so I am confused as to why this would occur. My ears feel stuffy, like a stuffy nose, like kinda irritated or swollen maybe, but I can pop them no problem. The popping doesn't relieve the fullness in my ear. It's very difficult to describe.
Do you always experience ear pressure/fullness because of your allergies? I take flonase (nasal steroid) daily, and usually Zyrtec (antihistamine), as well as regular nasal saline. I'm also 6 months into allergy shots, but haven't experienced any change. I'm getting really frustrated. Do you take anything besides sudafed for your ear symptoms?

Jen

 
Old 05-11-2013, 08:21 AM   #5
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Re: ETD or something else?

At the moment because of my cold I have constant pressure in my ear's also ringing noises.
I was diagnosed many year's ago with Tinitus which I have learned to live with, but with this cold that has multiplied.
I have used "Vick's Sinex Spray" which clear's my nose instantly but it is addictive and I try only to use it when I'm desperate to breathe.
The pressure in my ear's will go when the cold goes. I cant offer any advice on your's but I do sympathise as it's horrible,

Solofelix.

 
Old 05-11-2013, 08:38 AM   #6
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Re: ETD or something else?

Jen, is your pressure constant, or do you find that it's worse at certain times of the day? For me, the pressure gets worse as the day progresses and by the end of the day it's horrible! My main annoyance is this crackling/crunching sound every time I swallow.

I guess the only advice I can give is, one day at a time. Please keep us posted regarding your tympanogram on Monday. If that turns out normal, don't lose hope, there are always other options. Are you still considering Dr. Poe in Boston? You have nothing to lose by sending your records and hopefully you'll get an appointment. If not, maybe Dr. Weeks in California?

Hope you're feeling better today. Happy Mother's Day!

 
Old 05-11-2013, 08:44 AM   #7
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Re: ETD or something else?

Tati-
Thanks for the happy Mother's Day!
My fullness is pretty much the same throughout the day, occasionally it will lessen by the evening. I haven't had as much crackling lately but it doesn't bother me as much as the fullness. The fullness makes me feel like I can't hear correctly but my hearing test shows that I obviously can.

No I haven't given up on dr. Poe. I'm going to see what happens Monday with the tympanogram and then send my records there. It can't hurt. I will definitely let you know what happens Monday.

Jen x

 
Old 05-11-2013, 01:57 PM   #8
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Re: ETD or something else?

Mh214-
Thanks for the happy Mother's Day too! You guys are so nice!

I feel like a weirdo because my pressure/fullness seems to lessen by night time.

I'm kinda worried about my tympanogram on Monday!!! I'm hoping it goes well. I have had so many of these done previously, I have no idea why this one is so daunting...

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Old 05-11-2013, 02:17 PM   #9
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Re: ETD or something else?

Jen, I will keep you in my prayers--please keep us posted

 
Old 05-12-2013, 05:22 PM   #10
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Re: ETD or something else?

Hi guys-
I'm still freaking out about this tympanogram tomorrow! I've been trying to keep distracted all day but my kids are going to bed soon and the worrying will be easier then. I am trying to be positive about it, but jeez the anxiety is something else right now. I feel like I'm just so worried that they'll tell me my ears are messed up again, after all that money and all that I went through to get rid of it. Thousands of dollars potentially wasted. I know everything in my tympanograms has been normal so far, even one I had with a bad cold. I guess like with any other chronic problem/illness, the prospect of it having returned is pretty scary. Even worse, I've already gone through every way to possibly fix this. Not sure how to handle this lately. I feel so frustrated.

Jen

 
Old 05-12-2013, 05:50 PM   #11
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Re: ETD or something else?

Hi Jen, sorry to hear you are so anxious, but I hope you were able to enjoy your Mother's Day. I tried to keep busy today, but my ears were bothering me so much. I experienced some fullness, but the crackling when swallowing was out of control. Now I also have some random popping if I move my head a certain way, who knows.

Regarding your test tomorrow, you have to think positive. I'm sure it will be ok. Are you still thinking about seeing Dr. Poe? I think I am going to send my records, there's nothing to lose!

Out of curiosity, have you ever thought about natural alternatives? Such as diet changes, acupuncture? I do acupuncture and it helps me relax, but not so sure it helps with the ear problems. I'm so desperate at this point that I might look into reflexology--what do u think? It's important to not give up hope!

 
Old 05-12-2013, 06:59 PM   #12
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Re: ETD or something else?

Tati-
I've tried supplements, vitamins, eating healthier, etc and they didn't seem to change much for the ears. I'm currently taking omega 3 fish oil for my dry eyes, which does help my eyes. I've tried seeing a chiropractor and a cranial osteopath as well. I'm going to send my records to Dr Poe for sure since his appt window is 10-12 mos out anyway, so if this disappears, I can cancel it. I did have a nice Mother's Day, but with my kids in bed, its hard to distract myself. I hope tomorrow will give me some direction. So far my PCP and every specialist he's sent me to has been useless. Maybe I just need to get a new PCP and start over.
Thanks for the support.
Jen x

 
Old 05-12-2013, 07:40 PM   #13
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Re: ETD or something else?

Hey jen im wishing you nothing but the best tomorrow i hope everything goes well for you. I guess we all might send our records to Dr. poe i guess he's the man to see. Im just scared of getting on a plane but like you said I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. Stay positive Jen and God be with you.

 
Old 05-13-2013, 04:10 AM   #14
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Re: ETD or something else?

Jen, good luck today--keep us posted!

 
Old 05-13-2013, 11:21 AM   #15
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Re: ETD or something else?

Hi guys,
So I have no idea what to do here. I had the new tympanogram, which showed a slight negative ear pressure, however, the audiologist told me that it is clinically insignificant(?!). She said there is no fluid behind either ear drum and both ears are fluid free. She recommended that I see a tmj specialist which sounds like a bunch of garbage. I've had an MRI done for tmj and it comes back okay, except for some slight moving of my jaw to the left when I open and close. She told me I shouldn't feel ear pain either because there's no fluid in my ears or retraction of my ear drums, but I DO get ear pain sometimes. It feels like a nasty infection and it never is. Mostly though its just fullness/pressure which isn't eliminated by popping my ears, as I've said.

I'm worried that with these tympanograms Dr Poe will not see me since they are along with my hearing tests, indicative of non blocked e tubes. I am still going to send my records I guess, but Im kinda worried now.

Today my left ear feels terrible. I'm visiting a new PCP today, they just happened to have an appt open, so I will hopefully get some help. Let me know how you're doing too.

Jen x

 
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