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Old 10-09-2001, 09:53 PM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Martinez, CA, USA
Posts: 1
Tmyknckrs HB User
pulsatile tinnitus

I have been experiencing pulsatile tinnitus in my right ear for 2 months now. I hear my heart beating in my ear 24 hrs a day, and have also experienced vertigo, dizziness, unbalance, headaches, and trouble concentrating. I've had a CT scan, EKG, and MRI and am scheduled to have an angiogram of the brain next week. The neurologist feels that I have a malformation of the dural fistula. Does anyone else have any knowlege of this? This noise is driving me crazy!

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Old 10-18-2001, 10:15 AM   #2
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Highlands Ranch, CO, USA
Posts: 2
Sageone HB User
Re: pulsatile tinnitus


I have also experienced pulsatile tinnitus, for almost a year now. I have had all the same tests that you have had (all came back normal) except I have not had an angiogram. I may suggest this to my new ENT at my next appointment.

I would like to know if you have any other symptoms, for instance, my pulsatile tinnitus like yours is in sync with my heartbeat, but it is intermittent throughout the day, worse at night. When I hear it, I can almost feel it(the rythmic pulse) and my right ear (where I hear it) feels plugged up or pressure. When I don't hear my heartbeat my ear does not feel plugged up or pressure. Please keep me informed after your angiogram if there are any results.

I know it is very frustrating to have this, It has really affected my quality of life. It seems as though you have a good doctor who is willing to really research this and help you so that is a good start. I have had 3 ENT's and none have even been able to give me a diagnosis.

Through my own reasearch I thought that I may have some sort of eustachian tube dysfunction as this does cause pulsatile tinnitus.

In any case, keep postive, there are several medical articles on the internet that I have read and say that at the very least, this type of pulsatile tinnitus, usually has treatment versus other types of tinnitus or ear noise.

Take Care

Old 10-20-2001, 04:39 PM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 56
rosalita100us HB User
Re: pulsatile tinnitus

i had a dural fistula in 1997. The noise from it was terrible. I had to sleep sitting up in a chair next to at tv with sedatives and sleeping pills. the noise was 24 hours a day. You need to seek a good nuro interventional radioligist. That's who cured me. They are very difficult to cure, but your chances for a cure run best with the best person in the field to do it. The noise will only get louder if you don't treat it as the fistula recruits more and more vesells., and you are at risk for a bleed from it. what part of the country do you live in?? Get the best you can get

Old 11-26-2001, 12:45 PM   #4
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 1
KarenF HB User
Re: pulsatile tinnitus


I am experiencing the same thing that you are. I have a pulsating sound in my right ear with which I get that full feeling in my ear. The weirdest thing is that I get it at almost the same time every day. It usually starts at around 5 in the afternoon and gets progressevly worse. In the evening it's constant and very loud, it drives me crazy! I hear it when I wake up in the morning but it pretty much goes away about a half and hour after I get up. It sometimes comes and goes throughout the day but it's very mild.

The one thing that I wanted to ask you is if you can stop it by pressing on your neck on the affected side? I can also stop it by opening my jaw really wide. My mother said that she had the same thing a long time ago and it was diagnosed as TMJ. It went a way after a long time. She didn't really do anything about it. I spoke to my ENT today and he said that he is sure that it's not TMJ.

I am scheduled for an MRI next week and am scared to death. I have read some pretty scary possible causes.

Thanks for listening and please let me know if you have any more information.

Karen <p>[This message has been edited by KarenF (edited 11-26-2001).]

Old 11-29-2001, 11:24 AM   #5
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Highlands Ranch, CO, USA
Posts: 2
Sageone HB User
Re: pulsatile tinnitus


To answer some of your questions regarding pulsatile tinnitus, yes I can eliminate the sound in my ear when I press on my neck, i.e. the carotid artery and jugular vein.

I have also gone the TMJ route, I don't believe this is the cause of my problems as I have had the TMJ therapy for a few months already and I have had no relief in my ear. It has helped the some neck pain and headaches but nothing else.

I have seen a new ENT in the last couple of months and she has prescribed me a diuretic for my ear. I do have Meniere's and she says that I may have an excessive amount of fluid in the inner ear which can also cause the pulsatile tinnitus. I have been taking the diurectic for almost 3 weeks now but I have not had any relief. I have some good days and bad days, the worst are when the weather changes to a rainy, humid or snowy weather.

It is good that your doctor is taking all the tests as they will rule out any serious issues that cause pulsatile tinnitus. Think positive. I know how difficult this is to deal with. I have had this problem for a year now and I would rather have severe dizzy spells I get from time to time than deal with this pulsatile tinnitus, it is not as easy to mask as other types of tinnitus. Hard to sleep at night, wakes me up at night. I can almost feel it pulsting sometimes.

In any case, keep me posted. Maybe together we can try to resolve this.

Take Care

Old 12-09-2001, 11:58 AM   #6
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Martinez, CA, USA
Posts: 1
Tmyknckrs HB User
Re: pulsatile tinnitus

I had my angiogram and it didn't show any fistulas. I also had a ABR test done, which showed a marked delay in the brain's response to sound in the right ear and a lesser delay in the left. Had another MRI which didn't show any abnormalities of the acoustic nerve. My Neuro is now consulting with an Otoneurologist. I've also started getting noise in the left ear, but different from the pulsatile tinnitus in my right ear. This sound is more like a bass drum - trying not to go crazy!

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