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    Old 07-18-2004, 07:03 PM   #1
    cicka
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    Eustachian tubes test

    I've been suffering from dizziness, lightheadedness, spaciness, headaches for about 2 years now. Recently I've had and ENG (I think) test done for testing balance. The warm and cold water pouring into the ears...
    This came back negative and I asked my ENT to do and Eustachian tube test, but he brushed me off saying there's "no indication" something is wrong with those. Even though I told him, my ears feel plugged some days!
    How is an Eustachian tube test done and is it different from ENG?
    Should I see another ENT and ask for it to be done?
    I read so many posts about similar symptoms in connection to the Eustachian tubes...
    Thanks

     
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    Old 07-23-2004, 08:23 AM   #2
    stitcher
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cicka
    I've been suffering from dizziness, lightheadedness, spaciness, headaches for about 2 years now. Recently I've had and ENG (I think) test done for testing balance. The warm and cold water pouring into the ears...
    This came back negative and I asked my ENT to do and Eustachian tube test, but he brushed me off saying there's "no indication" something is wrong with those. Even though I told him, my ears feel plugged some days!
    How is an Eustachian tube test done and is it different from ENG?
    Should I see another ENT and ask for it to be done?
    I read so many posts about similar symptoms in connection to the Eustachian tubes...
    Thanks

     
    Old 07-23-2004, 08:25 AM   #3
    stitcher
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    You can ask your Dr. to do a Thympaogram test to measure the fluid level and response in your inner ear. I have the same problem and will have it donw ASAP. My eustachaian tubes are blocked, too. this is what my ENT suggested yesterday.
    Hope you feel better.

     
    Old 07-23-2004, 05:16 PM   #4
    Murphy
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Cicka: I'm surprised U haven't had a E-tube test 1st. Normally that's always done 1st
    before ENT will test further. Different equip. @ ofc's, but it's a plug put in 1 ear @ a
    time. Tech then pushes button & a print-out is recorded as the plug tightens air-tight
    then other ear is done. Maybe 1 min. ea. ear. It's called Tympanogram. I think maybe
    there's a mix up in communication w/ Dr? ENG is expensive & done later to rule out
    certain problems but not foolproof. ETD is a generic word for any tube inflammation.
    The openings are in back of throat & go over to middle ear. If these swell from drainage or sore throat, U have ETD. It's like a straw that narrows then the lining
    stops flowing correctly. Dizzy is inner-ear. Allergies always have ETD. Fullness isn't
    always fluid. Sometimes it's trapped air. If chronic, ask ENT for a sinus CT Scan to
    rule out infection. Get a new Dr. if U don't feel heard.

     
    Old 07-23-2004, 08:06 PM   #5
    cicka
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    I guess part of the problem might be that here in Canada we're covered by the government and you can't really ask for a procedure unless there's an "indication". Who knows....
    But I never had the test done that you're describing. Personally I found the ENG a bit strange - for a big part of it I had to look at lights on the wall. What does that have to do with ears?!
    I will ask my doc. to send me to another ENT and ask specifically for the Tympanogram. ...and hope I'll get it.
    If it comes back negative I'll be so frustrated tho! I've been to so many tests for my dizziness and they all come back negative. I wish they'd already find out what's wrong!
    So can one "feel" when their E. tubes are plugged?

     
    Old 07-23-2004, 08:09 PM   #6
    Blondee15
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    My allergist can tell by the fluid in my middle ear.. also it's pretty obvious what it is when my sinuses are stuffy yet my ears are killing me & my hearing is muffled. The biggest dead giveaway was how much my ears improved after going on daily Flonase. I think symptoms alone should be indicative of ETD. Anyways, the main treatments are nasal sprays(all kinds), decongestants(Sudafed Severe Congestion is my absolute favorite, that stuff is awesome.. I don't know where i'd be without it hehe) & antihistamines. ETD means more than one area is affected, so if you've got clear sinuses & no sore throats along with the ear pain, it's unlikely, but not impossible you have ETD. It's just that usually it causes swollen, sore throats, stuffy, painful sinuses along with the ear pain. Have you had a sinus ct? could be worth getting.

     
    Old 07-23-2004, 08:55 PM   #7
    stitcher
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    This is for Murphy. I was diagnosed with Vestibular Neuritis last year and some of the dizziness has returned along with ET pressure and tinnitis. Does the Tympanogram make you more dizzy when it's done? I am having
    this done in 2 weeks and I am apprehensive. Dr. feels fluid in the middle ear from allergies might be the problem. Just what is this test measuring and if you have fluid in the middle ear what are some of the othere causes and what do you do about it? You sound like someone who works in the field?

     
    Old 07-23-2004, 11:34 PM   #8
    cicka
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Blondee, I get congested - unfortunatelly I've been hooked on nasal decongestants for 6 years, now weaning off - ears feel plugged every now and then, pain in colder weather, but no sore throat, maybe just a bit. I get hoarse when I talk a lot sometimes and the vocal cord area would hurt.
    I do get daily headaches though. Is it typical for ED?

     
    Old 07-24-2004, 05:21 PM   #9
    stitcher
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Does the E-tube test make you dizzy? I am scheduled to have this test in a few weeks and wondered if it could make the dizziness I have worse. I have terrible pressure and blocked feeling in my ET, mostly in the right ear. Also have tinnitis and some dizziness as a result of vestibular neuritis diagnosed 15 months ago. In April I would have told you that all of my dizziness, etc was 95% gone and then I developed the ear pressure. Also referred by ENT to Allergist for work-up and suggested lowering my thyroid medication. He is leaing toward the allergy component since I used to get allergy injections years ago. We live in the NE where it has been particularly damp this summer.
    Thanks for any information.

     
    Old 07-31-2004, 01:12 PM   #10
    petpeeve
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Hi Stitcher: I just decided to browse through some of the inner ear postings but I have been diagnosed with PET. I occasionally see someone come into the posting discussions there and they have similar symptoms to all of us but I see some differences also. So I wanted to ask you. First of all I have the dizziness and ear pressure and tinnitus. I have had allergies all my life and took shots when I was a kid. They worked wonders and no allergies for a long time. Took shots again a few years ago--they thought it might be aggravating PET but I had no difference in ear symptoms after 2 years of shots. The thing that I see is different is that your group seems to talk about having headaches or ear pain-- I am assuming that is from fluid buildup behind the eardrum and having a blocked ET. My ET is supposedly open all the time vs shut like the normal ET. But I am still trying to figure out if my diagnosis is accurate. What is the vestibular neuritis and its symptoms--how did they diagnosis that? The other big symptom with PET (patulous eustachian tube) is that our own voice is so loud and echoes through that open ET--do you have any problem speaking because it sounds too loud in your own head? Thanks for your feedback

     
    Old 07-31-2004, 07:28 PM   #11
    stitcher
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Hi Petpeeve - Vestibular Neuritis is usually from a viral infection in the inner ear. Iinitially you experience severe dizziness, may have vomiting and present with severe reation to motion. It gradually subsides and usually goes away. I have had it for 15 months and it has come back. We're looking to allergies again. Did have injections for 10 years, so maybe I'll need them again. I am allergic to molds and mildew and I live in NE PA where it has rained all summer!
    How did they diagnose the E tube problem? What procedures have you had?
    I did have an ENG test and that said I have lost 55% of the balance in my right ear. I do vestibular exercises then I am stable enough. Certainly not in the last few weeks!
    Loud noises make me dizzy and that in turns makes me anxious! The pressure in my ears is horrible at times.
    Sounds like we certainly have very simliar syptoms. My hearing is extremely sensitive. No loss at all......
    Feel well

     
    Old 08-01-2004, 02:40 PM   #12
    petpeeve
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Hi Stitcher: Thanks for the reply. I have not had a viral infection of the inner ear--well at least not that anyone has diagnosed and I am assuming that is correct because I have no ear pain or fever. I have mild dizziness with rare associated nausea so it doesn't match up with your definition of Vestibular Neuritis. And whatever I have, I am diagnosed with PET, certainly hasn't cleared up and gone away. I have had symptoms for over 5 years that have affected my lifestyle and probably symptoms before that but mild enough to disregard.
    But the symptoms of a lot of these ear problems that people are posting about have overlap and I can certainly see why it is difficult to get an accurate diagnosis if you don't see an ENT that is well educated in all the types of disorders. I have become an advocate for my own health just because of the number of "specialists" that gave me a diagnosis without any test to clearly determine what it was and then on top of that gave different suggestions on treaments and sometimes exactly opposite. It can be frustrating and confusing but worse of all can aggravate the situation.

    You said you have allergies and so do I. I took shots when I was a kid and they were like a miracle cure. My allergies went away and left me alone for over 20 years. The allergies came back but not with typical symptoms like sneezing and watery eyes. The allergist and ENT thought the allergies might be making the PET situation worse so i took shots again for 2 years. You said you took shots for 10 years?? Why so long? Anyway, the shots this time around did nothing but leave my arms bruised for 2 years. Too bad but worth a try. Seems to be some link between allergies and ear infections for a lot of us with different kinds of ear diagnoses.

    The Patulous Eustachian Tube problem was determined by the symptoms of autophony (your own voice is loud and echos in your head since the ET is open all the time or most of the time) and feeling of ear fullness. Beyond the patient symptoms I was examined by the otoscope (no sign of fluid buildup behind the ear so that eliminates quite a few of the other problems that also manifest pressure in the ear). The best tests are some of the actual measurements they can do on the ear to see how it relates to pressure--not sure what those are called and of course the endoscope where they can actually go in and view the ET and see if it is open. I had two of those--one doctor said he could actually see the ET was open when it should normally be closed. It is hard to argue with that but the other guy that looked in just kind of moved on to the next subject. I asked him directly what he saw and he just said it probably looked floppy-- but he had problems getting the endoscope into the right position so ....

    You mentioned having an ENG test--what is that? I would like to see what is going on with my balance. What are these vestibular exercises? i have noticed since the ear condition has worsened that I feel dizzy if I am sitting still in a chair--nothing when I am up walking or moving around. Sometimes I might lose my footing on the stairs--that is new but doesn't happen often. But i really notice when I am doing some things like yoga or ballet or any kind of activity where i need to balance on one leg--I use to have great balance and now I wobble on one leg.

    You mentioned that loud noises make you dizzy. i don't experience that but loud noises are louder than they used to be. I find I am sensitive to noise more than before and even resort to ear plugs on bad days. I do have the pressure that you said you experience. Do you have pressure because of fluid in your ears due to the inflammation of the vestibular area?

    It has been helpful to hear what you are doing and experiencing even though it sounds like we have different diagnoses. Most of the people with the patulous eustachian tube seem to have what is called semi-patulous which means that instead of being closed like a normal ET--theirs opens and closes at random even if they aren't swallowing or yawning. Maybe they can pressurize their ears throughout the day a little. Mine has been diagnoses as patulous on one side and semi-patulous on the other so maybe that is why I feel the dizzyness and there don't seem to be others feeling it as much. So your experiences with the ENG test and some sort of exercises for balance might be helpful to me. Thanks for reading this long winded response.

     
    Old 08-02-2004, 01:47 PM   #13
    petpeeve
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    Re: Eustachian tubes test

    Hi Stitcher: Oops--pushed the wrong button and resent my note to you with no response. Fingers are faster than the brain. Anyway, thanks for the website for eye exercises to help with balance. That ear ablation sounds horrible. What about the cold/warm water test--you said it wasn't fun but is it painful? Uncomfortable?

    The endoscope test for the nose is pretty simple. Sometimes the doctor will spray the nose with a little anesthetic but I had it done once without and it wasn't bad. The one time they couldn't get the scope past my deviated septum so they went on the other side and all the way around. It isn't painful and the scope is very tiny. I think more than anything else it just feels wierd. almost a little tickle because something is going up your nose and down the back to look at the eustachian tube. I didn't get a gag response because they don't go down your throat very far. Sometimes when he was maneuvering the scope it would run into the wall of the nose and it kind of startles you because it is just a new and wierd feeling but it didn't hurt. It is just the idea of another test after so many pokes and prods. I would have it again without hesitation. In fact I am trying to find a doctor who can do it but with the videoendoscope. Both times I have had it done the doctor used a scope but it is the older kind where only he can see the ET. I want to see for myself on the videoscreen what the ET looks like. also both of my doctors just looked at the ET and I have heard that they can actually have you swallow and yawn while in there to compare that movement with a normal ET. Next time around I want the whole test. I would like to be sure of a diagnosis so I can move forward and do something but something correct. In the past I was given decongestants for the stuffiness but supposedly that is wrong for PET. I don't want to be doing any surgeries or anything major if I am not dealing with PET but something else. Hearing your symptoms is what makes me wonder. Also you mentioned that you did not have a fever or earache so I am wondering how they discovered you had VN. What test was done to give you that diagnosis. Was it just based on the balance issue afterwards? It sounds like the balance issue is more predominant with your situation and VN diagnosis--it is mild in most PET cases. I guess the problem arises when we have more than one diagnosis. I will go check out that exercise info now. Thanks again and tell me more. I will go click on your name and read all your posts together to learn more about your history and background--you can do the same with me to see what i have been talking about with symptoms--most of my postings are in the eustachian tube area but it is nice to be able to use the function where you can see one persons postings all together. These threads get confusing sometimes.

     
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