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  • Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

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    Old 04-21-2005, 04:35 AM   #1
    bigmouth
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    Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

    Hello all,

    Excuse my more or less bad english, it's not my first language.

    I'm a 21 yo. male who's had mild ear pain for a long time, over 3 months, and the doctors haven't found the cause of it. My ears are completely fine, there are no signs of an infection.

    I believe the pain started after a cold/flu episode after xmas, when I had congested sinuses for a month, and afterwards noticed the ear pain. This has also been the explanation from my GP, an ENT specialist and a dentist - that it's something "lagging" from the flu episode. I've just had the usual checkups, x-ray at dentist, blood sample at GP and the usual ear and throat stuff at the ENT specialist. No CT-scans, nothing like that to look at sinuses or further down the throat.

    Thing is I don't believe that this came from the flu. The flu I had was mild, and it's been over 3 months since then.

    My daily life is starting to get affected by my pain now, I'm more irritated and don't have much willpower to do stuff. I give up easily, because I always have this pain in the "back of my head" so to speak, knowing that it's been there for a long time and doesn't show any signs of improving.

    The pain I'm feeling is in both the ears, and most of the time it's not even bad. It's just noticeable and annoying. Sometimes though I have flare-ups I think with fever/chills and general discomfort. However nothing that really breaks me down... I don't have to stay in bed or anything like that. It's not *that* bad.

    Anyhoo I'm of course thinking this is something dangerous... heck, 3+ months of constant mild pain, doctors not finding anything unusual, using the easy way out blaming a flu.

    I don't have any other symptoms but the ear pain, though there is a left tonsil that has been going up and down a couple times, and a lymph node on the neck (below jaw - below ear) which has been fairly large (0.5-1cm) but is smaller than before, right now atleast. I think it goes up and down too. I also sometimes feel a slight discomfort further down the neck when the ear pain is at it's worst, but it's not bad either. I just notice it's not 100%.

    I've read about head and neck cancer on the web, especially hypopharynx and oropharynx which both lists ear pain as a symptom. Haven't found much info though whether it affects both ears.

    Please--if anyone has any input here on what this could possibly be, what I can tell the doctors to get more checks done, or any input at all I would appreciate it.

    Thanks in advance.

    Also forgot to mention that I started antibiotics (keflex) for a prostatitis in January which I ended just two weeks ago. Could that be related? I read that you could get fungal infections from long-term antibiotics, is that fitting with my symptoms?

    Last edited by bigmouth; 04-21-2005 at 09:17 AM.

     
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    Old 04-22-2005, 12:02 PM   #2
    Hanalia
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    Re: Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

    Not that I'm a doctor or anything, but I had a lot of the same issues this fall and winter. We had relocated and I didn't have a PCP, but I had my 1 year olds pediatrician check my ears repeatedly for infection. Nothing. The pain lasted for 4-5 months but has since gone away. if you Dr's have runs so many tests and not picked anything up I would just wait it out a bit longer.

     
    Old 04-22-2005, 01:28 PM   #3
    bigmouth
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    Re: Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

    Thanks Hanalia, I appreciate your answer and it's "good" to hear that things can last that long. Hopefully I'm just stressed and psyched out, but it's not a fun situation to be in. Thankfully I'm getting a 2nd opinion from a doc on monday who will hopefully listen to my concerns.

     
    Old 04-23-2005, 04:18 AM   #4
    DawnP
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    Re: Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

    I just wanted to reply that because you have pain in both ears, that cancer is unlikely. Usually it it is one sided er pain. The reason they say that cancer is a symptom of throat cancer is that the ears share nerves with the throat. I really think this is not cancer. I know hown annoying it can be. Hopefully, it will just go away. Best of luck to you!

     
    Old 04-23-2005, 08:06 AM   #5
    bigmouth
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    Re: Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge and your well wishings -- appreciated.

     
    Old 04-26-2005, 08:24 AM   #6
    bullun
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    Re: Mild ear pain for more than 3 months--cancer?

    Bigmouth,
    If you're still truly concerned I'd see your physician again and ask to be referred to a neurologist. It could stem from a variety of other things not necessarily cancer. You could have some type of nerve issue causing the pain. Or other various things that would cause pain to radiate to your ear. Not necessarily meaning the pain actually stems from your ear itself. Best of luck and keep us posted!

     
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