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theponderousman 12-17-2009 10:26 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
[QUOTE=Iwanttohear;4144985]Hello guys, you really encouraged me to have the operation. I am having severe problem with my right ear and I am sick and tired of asking people sorry what? they kind of think that I dont understand or anything but the thing is I have otoskleroz and sorry but I do not hear if you talk under a certain decibel. Anyways i am really seeing that it now effects my work and social life.
But I just wonder if I can fly (not really I mean by plane of course ) after the operation. I am living in Switzerland and I want to have the operation in my home country which is Istanbul during Christmas time . My doctor is there and I just wonder if it gives any harm to fly after a while. Does anyone know anything about it? I am pretty worried about the home staying part of it. And what not to dos after the operation. ANy information will be appreciated.
Thank you and quick recovery to everyone.

I think every doctor is going to be different on this, and also there's 2 types of surgery methods, the stapedotomy (what I got) and the original stapedectomy. My DR recommended 1 month, I've read 6 weeks, I've heard of 2 weeks. Personally I've been REALLY cautious on my and recovery because the last thing I'd want to do is screw up what just happened and I don't really want to have to go in for a follow up surgery! SO I'm staying at 6 weeks. I agree with others, check with YOUR Dr and go from there.

Good luck and be prepared to experience what others on this site have, but in your own way too! It's been one hell of an adventure! lol

mikek222 12-18-2009 07:01 AM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
I had my surgery yesterday, I was told that the reason for not flying is that if it causes the eardrum to move too much it might move the prosthesis. However, the surgeon told me that he has performed the operation on pilots and has allowed them to return to flying after a couple of weeks without problems. I would recommend that you have the surgery performed by someone who does several of these procedures a week. I would not allow my hometown doctor to do the surgery just because I was comfortable with him and my home country. Good luck!!

nandi 12-19-2009 06:29 AM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Hi Everyone

It's day 11 post-op for me, and things are just fine!! The packing (everything) has been removed on day 7 (which seems to be sooner that some other surgeons remove the packing) and I can really hear very well. Immediately after my visit to the doctor, all the sounds were strange and background noises sounded too loud (almost the same as when I tried out a hearing aid 4 years ago, but not quite as bad). Four days on it has definitely improved. The tinnitus and all the other "strange sounds" are also much less.

I am really grateful, I only had one episode of vertigo and no nausea whatsoever - the only disadvantage of not having any nausea is of course that I did not lose a kilo or two pre-Christmas, but I guess that's OK ;);).

Good luck to everyone on your recovery.

soundwave 12-19-2009 04:11 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
I am on day 17. Packing still in, no hearing yet. Waiting for Jan 14, that is my follow up appointment. I imagine mine stays in longer than most because i also had a tymplanoplasty.

I was wondering though, what is the packing? I am supposed to use ear drops 5 days before i go in to have the packing removed to soften it up. My understanding is that it helps everything in place during healing. How much is actually in there? Has anyone seen it when they take it out.

I think a little bit of mine came out a day or two after the surgery, but when i called the Dr, he said it wasn't a major problem.

Glad to hear everyone is recovering well, and that you keep updating on this board. Thanks!

soundwave 12-19-2009 04:17 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
per the flying question, my doc said no flying for 2 days. he said that you need to be proactively yawning and chewing to release the pressure that builds during ascending and descending. They say its particularly important descending. They recommended I use a nasal spray, and not go to sleep on the plane. They did acknowledge that the time required before flying has changed in recent years. i am flying in a week (3 weeks after surgery) and have checked with multiple sources on this and have heard the same thing.


theponderousman 12-20-2009 08:47 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
I got the packing out about 9 days after the surgery and asked to see it. They had to put in some 'softening' drops for about 10 minutes before hand and it was still somewhat hard in there. Although the packing FEELS like it's about 2 feet long and 1 foot thick inside your head, mine was 2 small cotton balls packed tightly and was probably about 3/4 of an inch long and just thicker than a regular pencil. I was disappointed actually! :cool:

One of the things that's really bugged me (and I'll call the office tomorrow) is that my right ear (good ear) still either has too much pressure in it to pop, or it's just being the most stubborn thing out there. I desperately want to pop my ears as it's been 3 weeks now, but I'll play that damn patience game :)

dreamweaver733 12-23-2009 08:30 AM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
I had my stapedectomy last Friday & had absolutely no pain or nausea. I took Vicodin for a few days just to prevent pain but can honestly say it wasn't really pain, just discomfort. I have a mild ringing in my ear and when I walk it sort of sounds/feels funny.

I wasn't dizzy except for a little the day & day after surgery but just today (5 day's post op) I am dizzy again & hear fluit moving around in my ear. Maybe I was trying to do too much?

soundboy 12-23-2009 03:17 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
I think it is important to take it really easy in those first 2-3 weeks, however I have read of many people who get a bout of dizziness a few days after the operation.
I was struck with terrible nausea on day 3, luckily it passed.
Good luck with your recovery and hang in there.

soundboy 01-04-2010 09:56 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
how's everyone going with their recoveries?

Unfortunately i recently went back to the ENT for a check up and I have got a small hole in my ear drum which means no water for another month at least. He's given three weeks to see if it will heal on it's own, otherwise i may need to get it plugged, I reall don't want to go back for more surgery...more waiting.

theponderousman 01-05-2010 12:32 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Good luck with that hole (and the waiting) Soundboy! Did they give any reasons for it by chance?

As for my report, it's been 5 weeks since my surgery and for the most part, things are going really well. My main complaint (or whatever you want to call it) is that my right ear (good ear) seems to have some congestion in it and is causing it to NOT pop even though my left ear (operated) can pop when I lightly try to or yawn. I went to the DR last week because of it and they gave me some allergy nose spray stuff but that still hasn't helped it. It's bugging the crap outta me!

Another thing I've been experiencing is when I do what I call, an 'internal hiccup' (hiccup without the sound), I experience a bit of vertigo for a moment. Kind of annoying if I drink something :)

Thankfully though everything's going well for my left ear. I can get the ear wet finally (YES) and can get back to a regular workout too which is NICE. The DR did the ol tuning fork on both my ears and my left ear is better, but that could be because of the congestion in the right one. It's just a matter of time now I guess...

Good luck everyone!

sarahebeth 01-05-2010 06:53 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Hey Everyone! I've been lurking for some time and finally decided to register so I could chat with you. I had a stapedectomy one week ago today (Dec. 29th). I would say everything so far has been pretty typical...vertigo for about 3 days, pain (but not horrible), no nausea (thank goodness!!!).

What I have to ask about, though, is this miserable pressure in my head and the fact that that all sound (both ears) seems muffled. I feel like BOTH ears are stopped up and that my entire head and neck are throbbing. My jaw and neck even feel almost bruised. I don't have any drainage, no fever, no redness, I don't think there is any infection, but it really is frustrating. I go tomorrow for my one week post op appointment, so I guess we'll see what they say then.

I haven't really noticed any improvement in my hearing yet either. There have been a few times that I thought MAYBE it was better for a second, but I certainly haven't had any EUREKA! moments. I'm trying to be patient, but I guess I really thought that after a week I would be feeling better. TIA for "listening".

theponderousman 01-05-2010 10:47 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Hey there Sarahebeth, congrats on the surgery and the 'good so far' recovery! The muffled part is pretty 'common' from what I've read and what I went through, and a month out for me, there still is some, unfortunately on the GOOD ear too :( Just ask your DR about the sore neck and all, although I think I recall reading one of the reports from a while ago that it happened to them too, so it could be a reaction some people have?

Just keep reminding yourself that you may not hear much of a difference for months...that way you won't be too upset if you can't tell :)

Reidan 01-06-2010 02:53 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Hello everyone. I too am at 5 weeks post-op. Things are better for me too. Still have some pains and sudden bursts of loud tinnitus (compared to my normal low background noise tinnitus) Hearing is not yet back to pre-surgery levels. This has me concerned, but I am trying to be patient and calm. Well, as much as I can be!!

My first post-surgery hearing test is still 3 weeks away. So I went to a music store to get a tuning fork to perform my own tests. The store owner told me that he does not get much requests for those anymore. Instead he showed me a small key-chain device that emits the 6 tones of a guitar, notes E,A,D,G,B, and e. Only cost $12 so I bought it. When comparing both ears I can definitely tell that the surgery ear hears the tone lower volume and pitch than the non-surgery ear.

If you took the time to read my other very long post you may remember that I posted that the incision from my surgery came out of the ear canal and onto the side of my head. Because of this I had lots of swelling and numbness. It has gotten much better, but still have some of it even today, 5 weeks after surgery. So I am hoping that is the cause of the hearing not recovering better.

To Sarahebeth,
The jaw soreness, and maybe even your neck, may be related to your Eustachian Tube which runs from the inner ear to the throat and passes real close to the jaw joint. The tissues around the tube are most likely inflamed from the surgery and you are feeling it in the jaw and neck muscles.

I had headaches for the first couple of weeks after the surgery. Had one or two days of sinus drainage that caused some stuffiness in my head and non-surgical ear. Took over the counter Zyrtec to clear it up.

As for not hearing any better. Do you still have surgical packing in your ear? I had 2 layers of packing. One was gauze that they removed 1 week after surgery and the other was a gel packing down deep in my ear that they did not remove until the 2 week mark. Things got much better then, but as I posted above. For me they have not approved to better than pre-surgery. But everyone has a different body and heals at a different rate.

If you have made it 1 week with little or no complications, you are doing real well. Be patient and let the ear heal.

soundboy 01-06-2010 04:33 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
No they didn't give a reson for the perforated ear drum, apparently it just happens sometimes. I'm hoping it will healby itself, my hearing is better than it was pre op so it's positive so far. (5weeks) I've noticed i'm saying what>? haa? can you repeat that? a lot less, which is comforting.

Hang in there Sarah it does get better, I remember after 2 weeks feeling like i just wanted to feel normal again, It's a massive knock to your system. And don't get discouraged by your hearing not being good yet. I'm at 5 weeks and consider myself lucky that it's starting to get good now.

Reidan - I also have a difference in pitch between ears. I produce music, and work in audio so really hoping this fixes. apparently a difference in pitch is pretty normal and generally fixes itself after around 6 weeks.

A naturopath friend put me on to a remedy called Traumeel. I think it's helped with the inflammation and fullness feeling. Can never really tell with these things, but i figure it can't hurt. It's a natural remedy for inflammation and Otitis. So it can only help with no side effects.

sarahebeth 01-06-2010 07:42 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Thanks, guys for getting back to me. What everyone said makes sense and is reassuring. I actually had my post op appointment today. He took out the stitches and then "vacuumed" out the gel stuff (which wasn't bad, but a little nerve wrecking). He then plugged my "good" ear and whispered numbers until I could hear them. He said I heard them at a moderate whisper. He was very close when he did it, so I'm not sure how to measure the amount of gain. I do go back in 2 more weeks, the 21st, for my official first post op hearing exam. That should be interesting.

As far as the muffled feeling, I think it has a LOT to do with pressure issues as well as healing. Sometimes it's so muffled and full feeling that it makes me crazy...then a few hours later it feels almost normal for a short while. Oh, and sounds are so strange I have water in my ears. Even riding in the car...the wind on the car and the passing cars seemed SO LOUD compared to the radio inside the car. Strange.

Anyway, I feel like I'm posting my thoughts in a stream-of-consciousness...sorry for that. I hope it makes sense. There is just soooo much that I'm analyzing, processing, and dealing with each day. I'm so glad others understand.

Oh, and in case anyone is curious, I have a mixed loss. My left was operated on and before surgery I had a PTA of 77 dB. My right ear is at 38 dB. I am 32, a mama to two little girls (5 and 18 months), and am a teacher.:)

theponderousman 01-06-2010 09:55 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Sarah, keep up the spirits! :) And trust me, the feeling of rambling in posts is ALSO normal! Go back and read mine for crying out loud! :) The description of the noise (not specific sounds) in the car is something that REALLY bugged me, but in a 'good' way because hey, it was sound I hadn't been hearing for a long tim!

I think my best way to describe what I was hearing to friends that always asked about it was that it was like standing next to a fast moving train talking to someone with a sea shell over your ear. I came up with other descriptions, including some when I had some drinks in me, but I liked that 1 the best!

Good luck in the coming weeks!

sarahebeth 01-07-2010 07:26 AM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
[QUOTE=theponderousman;4157584]I think my best way to describe what I was hearing to friends that always asked about it was that it was like standing next to a fast moving train talking to someone with a sea shell over your ear. I came up with other descriptions, including some when I had some drinks in me, but I liked that 1 the best![/QUOTE]

Wow!!!!!!!!!! Perfect description!!! Perfect! I am so glad it's "normal". When did that feeling go away for you? I am a high school teacher and am wondering how it's going to be in the classroom. I wasn't in school last week b/c of Christmas break/surgery and we have been out all week so far because of snow (a BLESSING for my healing). I think it may be back to reality tomorrow, though.

theponderousman 01-07-2010 03:58 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Well for me I'd say it was there for a good 3 weeks if not more. Keep in mind, as with the tinnitus, I got used to some of the sounds and feelings (dizzyness is still there at times but I'm used to that now too). But each person has so many different reactions to the surgery, and there's 2 different surgeries at that! Which 1 did you get by the way?

I've gone to a few movies since the surgery at the places that have the high end sound systems, and I've found that bringing a small squishy ear plug has helped in some of the scenes (Avatar had a few loud ones). So you may want to hold onto a few of those in rare times too.


soundboy 01-07-2010 05:00 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report

Yeah i know what you mean, I had the earplug in and out all through Avatar..especially the war scenes

Pondorous how's your hearing now overall, we had the op around the same time

Mine's better than before the operation, but it's still very bass heavy..still missing out of lots of high frequencies. can you easily hear all speech now from your new ear?

sarahebeth 01-07-2010 05:05 PM

Re: New Stapedectomy Report
Huh. I didn't know there were two different types of surgeries. For mine, I was completely sedated. He peeled back my eardrum, took a piece of tissue from that little cartilage knob in front of my ear (guess it has a name, but I don't know it), used that tissue to close off my inner ear (I think that's what he said he did with it), took out the stapes, and replaced the stapes with teflon/titanium stapes. He said my "ear was wide open" with no nerves in the way and just took 45 minutes. I also had about 5 stitches on the the "knob" that he took the tissue from. I had all packing and stiches removed one week post-op (yesterday). Does that sound pretty typical?

Side husband just sat down to play the piano per my 5-year-old's request...I feel like I have my head in a bucket.

Hey, how long were you told not to lift anything heavy? I have a 21 lb 18 month-old. Not being able to pick her up is breaking my heart. We've had to do a lot of floor sitting.

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