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    Old 11-08-2009, 07:31 AM   #1
    Pracs
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    Considering Stapedectomy

    I was advised Stapedectomy 5 years ago but I chose hearing aids. Now, I am thinking of having the surgery done (loss up to 60%). The doctor has just taken audiograms and impedance tests but is sure it is a case of Otosclerosis. Isn't an MRI scan required to make sure?
    Can I really not fly for 6 weeks? What are the long term effects and restrictions? Need advise from people who have had surgery done 1 year+ ago.

    Last edited by Pracs; 11-08-2009 at 07:31 AM.

     
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    Old 11-08-2009, 08:43 AM   #2
    Laureen
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    My dear friend

    I have exactly the same thoughts with you. Most people have successful outcomes and regain most of their hearing. The problem is the duration of this surgery. I am 43 years old and I don't know if it will last for 40 years. Many people experience problems with the prosthesis after 6-20 years.
    Consider the this operation was invented 50 years ago and the latest version of it only 17 years ago. So I don't think that anyone has a long term evaluation. That is the reason I have chosen to postpone it for as long as heating aids serve me.

     
    Old 11-08-2009, 11:32 AM   #3
    ozkeweenaw
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    I had my first one done in 1988. Lasted for 18 years. Had the other ear done 2 years ago by a different surgeon and it didn't take. I've struggled with hearing aids for 2 years, and being a musician, it's frustrating, as the technology for hearing aids is made for the music industry. I just had a revision of the original done last week, after getting a second opinion. I found out from the surgeon that I'm dealing with now that the surgeon who performed the second stapedectomy didn't believe I had otosclerosis. I was hot, and managed to contact the original hospital from 20 years ago. Thank goodness that records are kept for 25 years in that facility.

    My present surgeon put me through repeat CT scans and MRI's and found the otosclerosis, along with the misplaced prosthesis in the second ear. He's 520 miles away, and I've missed a lot of work with the travel, but my advice is to question ANYTHING that you don't feel is right. So far, the only setback I'm having is the antibiotics playing havoc on my digestive system, and he's been in contact with me by phone if I have any questions. I've learned a lot about being your own advocate in the last 2 years. Express your concerns to your doctor.

     
    Old 11-10-2009, 02:49 AM   #4
    Pracs
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Ozkeweenaw,

    Thanks for your advice. I'll bear that in mind.
    How're your ears now?

    Your first operation was a long time ago. How bad was your ear then and what kind of improvement did you get? Can you outline your recovery process?

     
    Old 11-10-2009, 02:53 AM   #5
    Pracs
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Laureen,

    I think I can postpone surgery for maybe another year or so but the hearing aids are proving to be limited in their effectiveness. Another question: Does delaying surgery affect the chances of success in future? I am 44 years now.

     
    Old 11-10-2009, 06:40 AM   #6
    Laureen
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Pracs View Post
    Laureen,

    I think I can postpone surgery for maybe another year or so but the hearing aids are proving to be limited in their effectiveness. Another question: Does delaying surgery affect the chances of success in future? I am 44 years now.
    No, not at all. You can have the surgery any time you like (as long as you have a good nerve function). The surgery does not delay the progress of otosclerosis if the disease spreads in the inner ear. It just solves the problem with the stapes immobilization.

    That is what I have been told by every doctor I have visited.

     
    Old 11-11-2009, 05:11 AM   #7
    ozkeweenaw
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    The original surgery corrected an 80% hearing loss in the left ear. I was dizzy for about a week, however, I was getting headaches from everything seeming so loud as my brain was adjusting to hearing the furnace, clothes dryer, etc.

    The right ear was done almost 2 years ago, and I experienced one day of dizziness, the day after the surgery. Go figure. The prosthesis slipped, so if this revision holds for a year, then I'll have the other ear corrected.

    I'm post-op day 9 right now, and the dizziness is bad in the morning, after getting out of bed, but since the swelling has gone down, I can interact in conversations with background noise, the car engine is too loud, and I can hear traffic going down the road from inside the house. Before this surgery, I had 60% loss in both ears.

    I did ask my surgeon about flying before the surgery. He recommended not to because of the plane's pressure and altitude changes. You really don't want that ear popping while it's healing. I'm taking his advice, because I've realized how much I've missed not being able to hear my niece and nephews while they are growing up. After the frustration of trying to get this corrected, I'm not taking any unnecessary chances.

    Keep in touch and let us know about what you decide to do.

     
    Old 11-11-2009, 08:29 PM   #8
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Hello ozkeweenaw,
    Just read your post and wanted to ask about the loudness that you have been experiencing.... as I had this surgery done on my right ear on Oct 26th and due to a fistula or a leak I had to go back in on the 28th and have the surgery redone. The first week was pretty hard with dizziness and vertigo. After 9 days I got the packing take out and ever since the intensity of the volume and loudness is almost unbearable. It seems like mechanical noises that cause vibration is the most intense....so much that most of the time I am wearing those orange foam earplugs to just be able to drive my kids to school.... the noise in the car and passing trucks cause a lot of dizziness for some reason.
    I feel like at home my kids and husband are yelling at me... when in fact they are not... I can tell they are not, and when they start laughing and the volume goes up I have to either leave or ask them to stop... which makes me feel awful.
    I have spoke with my dr twice about this incredible volume I am getting and he seems to be a little puzzled by it, and just wants me to just be patient and give it some time... hoping things will settle down some.
    Really, I am hoping to find if anyone else has experienced this loud, amplified, echo noise the way I have. I was almost to the point where my hearing was almost gone in the ear he did operate on.... so perhaps this will just take some time for my brain to adjust... I don't know?
    I am grateful to find this message board... as it helps to talk to others that have had and gone through this procedure.

    Wishing you all well... and good hearing to come!

    PK

     
    Old 11-12-2009, 04:20 AM   #9
    ozkeweenaw
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    It's going to take time for your brain to adjust. It will take time, but gradually, things should calm down. If I recall correctly, the first time, it took about 6 weeks. At the time, I was in my last semester of college, and my major instrument was percussion. I stayed away from the cymbals for a while.

    Remember, that you probably haven't heard many noises that people take for granted for a long time, so everything is going to seem increased in volume for a while. It's hard for people that have never been through this to understand what it's like. I heard my cat purring on my lap without any hearing aids in yesterday for the first time in years, and it was incredible.

    Be patient and give it a couple of weeks. Keep in touch and let me know how's it goes.

     
    Old 11-12-2009, 07:32 AM   #10
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Thank-you for your kind words and encouragement! Yes, it is hard for others to understand this completely... something you just have to experience. My friends and family just keep telling me to just be happy that I can hear again. It's not that I am not happy, just having a hard time and not quite certain that this is normal. The volume is just so loud and amplified it makes my head spin, causes dizziness and some panic to set in.
    It sounds like I need to give this at least two months or close to that anyways. I hope my brain can deal with this newness....as I will be turning 43 here soon and hoping my brain isn't too old... LOL!
    I will keep you updated and hope you all do as well..!!

    Peace and best wishes!
    PK

     
    Old 11-13-2009, 12:36 AM   #11
    Laureen
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Hi PKinKS!

    I would like to ask you if you had your stapes tendon removed during the operation. My ENT told me that this causes noise intolerance and that is the reason that he preserves this tendon.
    But some people that had the tendon removed claim that they hear just fine. I don't know what to believe.
    I surely wish you the best recovery!

     
    Old 11-13-2009, 06:14 AM   #12
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Hi Laureen, that is a good question.... I don't know? I had to have surgery twice on that ear. I went in on Oct 26th and then due to a fistula or a leak, my ear didn't seal I was back in for surgery on the 28th. All he told me was he had to re-do my procedure a little different than usual. Maybe I should have asked more questions... and probably will next time I see him
    Thanks for the well wishes... I am just taking it day by day and hoping things will settle down soon!

    Have a great week-end!
    PK

     
    Old 11-13-2009, 12:59 PM   #13
    ozkeweenaw
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Hi PK!

    43 isn't old. I'm that now. I'm looking forward to next year, if this surgery works out, to have the other ear done.

    If you need to talk, just let me know. I've had wonderful, supportive friends and family who have helped me through my frustrations over the past 2 years after the right surgery failed. Hearing aids are great tools, but are not a cure all for everyone. My audiologist explained to me me that the aids can't be adjusted to my hearing test because of the type of hearing loss I have. She has the patience of a Saint, as I was in weekly for the first 6 months, trying to get them adjusted so I could hear my Church Choir that I direct, over the organ. She said that musicians have the most difficult time coping with this as the technology hasn't caught up to the music industry yet.

    Looking forward to "chatting" more with you.

    OZ

     
    Old 11-14-2009, 07:18 AM   #14
    PKinKS
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    Re: Considering Stapedectomy

    Hi Oz, thank-you for you kind words and support... and yes, it is wonderful to have very supporting friends and family... as mine have been wonderful as well. I am so sorry about your right side failing. Both of my ears are effected as well and my dr wants to correct both of them, but like you I am waiting to see if this one works out before I go through surgery like that again... not that it was that horrible, but I did have that leak, or fistula that caused an emergency surgery two days after my first.... YUCK!
    I am going in to see my audiologist this coming Tuesday and he will be making a mold and then an ear plug for my ear to reduce the sound decibels... I know that 43 is not too old, but he did tell me that my brain is having a hard time with the new noises, my brain is in some kind of shock... it is being stubborn and I am not adjusting at a normal pace. Everything is just so loud, amplified, echos and noise vibration from machinery is just too much for me... SAD! I do think I am getting some better... we went out for a short drive last night and I was able to handle the road noise and trucks passing by a little better.
    So, they are just going to slowly introduce sound back to me a little at a time.... I guess that is all my brain can handle, as I was getting to the point where some depression was setting in, I was crying a lot, I would separate myself from my family, and I refused to go anywhere out of fear that I wouldn't be able to handle the noise. Last week I did try and go to a family function at our kids school, just to end up out in the car waiting for them for about 1 1/2 hours! The next day we all went to the grocery store and my husband had to escort me out of the store.... the noise was so loud in there I almost passed out. Every since then I have not left my house but on a few occasions.
    I will be ok... I do feel better that they know how to help me. This will just take longer for me to adjust and I am thankful that the surgery did work for me... feels like it worked too well.. but I know for so many it has not.

    Oz, I do pray this time it is successful for you! I know the frustration of not being able to hear.. it limits what we can do and limits some of our passions.
    To all of you... please hang in there... my thoughts and prayers are with you~!!!

    PK

     
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