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    Old 08-01-2004, 08:51 AM   #1
    soundsensitive's Avatar
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    A strange combination of symptoms...

    This is my first post here, and I am hoping to put a name on what I have been experiencing for more than a year. It may be important to mention that I am only 15, and the symptoms started when I was 14. The dizziness and the hearing issues may or may not be related (from what little I know).
    I was using Afrin (and was addicted according to my ENT) for about 8 years until I quit in the summer of 2002.

    I read on the internet that it could be an allergic reaction to something. I do get flea bites, but only in the summer. I have a cat who goes out at night, and in the summer, the fleas breed and bite. Everyone in my family except for me gets only a few bites in the whole summer, but in some summers, I have gotten in excess of 70 flea (bites). I have been getting bit since the year 2000. My father speculates that I am not getting bit 70 times by fleas, but that I am allergic to them, and one bite becomes 20 bites on me.

    And I did have an ear infection in my right ear in March-April of 2003.

    My symptoms: Lightheadedness/dizziness that is especcialy bad when I stand up, Tiredness, headaches, ringing in the ears, occasional feeling of fullness in both ears, right ear mostly, occasional clicking in right ear, sensitivity to loud sounds that no one else has, occasional pain in right ear.

    Now onto the story:

    Last spring/summer (2003) I started feeling lightheaded/dizzy with headaches, but only in warm/hot weather. I would only get headaches in the winter, and not as much as in the summer. I went to my doctor about a year ago (NOT an ENT) and told him about this. He said that I was not getting enough water, and to drink more water, gatorade, and eat slightly more salty foods. I did what he said, and it either barely helped or didn't help at all.

    A few weeks after the doctor visit, I read somewhere on the internet that Iron is essential to bringing oxygen throughout the body, and it was possible that I was iron deficient. So I bought Iron tablets from CVS, and used them for maybe 2 weeks. The first day I used them, I felt great. I didn't feel dizzy or have a headache at all that day. But every day after that first day, the Iron pills seemed to get less and less effective, until two weeks after the first day, the Iron made no difference, so I stopped taking them.

    I usually only get the dizziness when I am out of my house walking around, etc. I am almost never dizzy sitting or laying down. The dizziness is worst when I stand up right after I was lying or sitting down. Headaches are also most noticeable when I am stand up doing things. When I am at home, I feel fine. No dizziness, maybe slight headache, not tired, but when I go outside, I get all of these symptoms.

    At this time, summer was ending, and it started getting colder. My dizziness stopped, but I would still get headaches every day. So, I would usually take Tylenol or Advil to mitigate the pain. I can't go to school with a headache, because I have to be able to concentrate and work there.

    Keep in mind that the story, up until now, is what happened last year. This next part of the story is what happened this year:

    In June, I start getting dizzy on the hot days, but I have no flea bites yet (that I knew of). In early of this month, I went to a "Peace meeting" that was set up by my school in the Prudential Center (Boston). This was the first time that I noticed that the music was terribly loud. It really bothered me, especially the high-pitched sounds. In my life, I don't remember having a problem with loud music before this.

    On July 3 of this year, I go on vacation in South America. I go to a place to play pool. The music there is loud. Almost unbearably loud, but no one else seems to think so.

    After going to another pool place that was even more loud (probably more than 120 dB), I developed ringing in the ears. It did not start right after I came back from the pool place, but after I came back from vacation (July 20). I have always had a (just barely audible) ringing in my ears that I first noticed when I was maybe 7. I only noticed it when it was completely quiet. Now, the ringing is louder, and I can hear it even when the TV or Radio is on. I am the only one in my family that hears the high-pitched noise of TVs, and it doesn't really bother me. I don't really confuse it with the ringing in my ears.

    After seeing a movie Friday night, I have a feeling of fullness in my ears, mostly my right one, and the same ear clicks sometimes, and usually does click if I swallow. The movie was too loud a lot of the time. It also seems that I am not hearing very well from my right ear.

    Remember that loud sounds bother me, especially if they're high pitched. Low pitched sounds bother me too, but not nearly as much.

    Is this hyperacusis? Tinnitus? Both? I feel like my life is over, because this is something that is most likely incurable. If you know or have an idea what it is, tell me.

    After the loud movie, it seems that I hear less, but the high pitched sound from TVs bother me a lot more.

    There is also a chance that I have depression. Looking at the symptoms from the NIMH website, it appears that I might have it. So if I do have it, and it gets treated by a doctor, will my sensitivity to sounds also go away?

    What is wrong with me? Is this early hyperacusis? Tinnitus? Will my sensitivity get worse? What can I do? Will I go deaf? Do you think I have some degree of hearing loss? What do you think the cause is? What can be done to treat it?

    Last edited by soundsensitive; 08-01-2004 at 10:12 AM.

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    Old 08-15-2004, 08:16 PM   #2
    smileyguy's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: A strange combination of symptoms...


    I'm no doctor but it sounds like you may be suffering from some sort of middle ear disorder such as Meniere's Disease or a congenital defect of some kind...

    You are right ... you have a strange combination of symptoms but I think that some are connected and some aren't...

    The flea bites, although unhealthy and should be avoided, probably are of little consequence to your hearing problems.

    The real key to your problem has to do with your balance problems and sensitivity to noise.

    If you really want some help, see an ENT and/or audiologist for further testing... And don't stop seeking answers...

    If you like to do research on the internet, check out place like the University of Maryland Medicince (www.umm.***) or Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons ( or Cornell Medical Center ( Or even just Google it!

    The point is to gather as much information about your symptoms as possible so you can speak intelligently with your doctor and assist in your own diagnosis.

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