Re: 2nd failed Tympanoplasty - What do I do?
You've been through the wringer! I also have suffered with Eustachian tube problems for a long time, well not my entire life, but it seems like a long time to me. I did try a PE tube last year in one ear to see if it would help me and it didn't at all. I know that they help some, but not me. Was your ETD helped at all by the tubes?
As far as your question on whether you should continue to haven these surgeries, I can't answer that because I don't know if its medically ok to have a fairly large opening in the ear drum. Have you asked your why/otologist what their opinion on this is? I would do that first, and if you don't get a clear answer, get another opinion. I'm sort of shocked that the dr who performed your second surgery would tell you to pop your ears. I mean, it's a delicate new little ear drum, why have you start testing its strength already? It brings my mind back to my c-section with my first daughter's birth... The area they just operated on is very vulnerable and weak. It was 10 wks before I was allowed to climb stairs. I feel like that dr did you a bit of a disservice by having you trying to equalize pressure with a new ear drum. Of course, that is my humble opinion. When I do a valsalva (pop my ears) I can feel the air that goes up there literally thump into my ear drum. It's not the gentlest of things. Is is it in any way possible that your body may be rejecting the patching (similar to transplant?) I know that prednisone is often given to calm the body's immune response in cases of transplant, but I'm not sure about your own body tissue.
I really feel like you should re consult your ent about leaving your ear drum open. The only thing I can think of off the top of my head is that obviously your middle ear would be open to the environment and therefore infection. The other reason is that you will still have the hearing loss, but it seems like the tympanoplasty didn't really change things all that much.
I'm sorry that I don't know more about tympanoplasties, I hope my opinions have been of some use to you.