Eustachian Tube Problems - Experience

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What is the Eustachian tube?

The Eustachian tube originates in the rear of the nose adjacent to the soft palate, runs a slightly uphill course, and ends in the middle ear space. The middle ear space is the hollowed out portion of the skull bone that contains the hearing apparatus and is covered on one side by the eardrum. In adults, the Eustachian tube is approximately 35 mm long (1.3 inches) and approximately 3 mm in diameter (less than 1/10 inch). Cartilage provides the supporting structure for the first two-thirds of the Eustachian tube, with the last third (the part closest to the middle ear space) being made of bone.

The tissue that lines the Eustachian tube is similar to that inside the nasal cavity and may respond the same way (swelling) when presented with similar stimuli. The Eustachian tube was named in honor of the 16th century Italian anatomist Eustachius. Sources credit Almaceon of Sparta as the first to describe the structure in approximately 400 BC.

Return to Eustachian Tube Problems (Problems Clearing Your Ears)

See what others are saying

Comment from: PrettyEyez, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 17

Eustachian tube (ET) Dysfunction - My chiropractor helped me with an acupuncture/acupressure technique. I have had ear pain for 3 months. Mine came on with a nasty cold. First doctor found infection and that cleared up in a couple weeks but the ear pain was worse. I have seen an ENT and done a lot of testing. ENT said ear is red and there are swollen areas so put me on a steroid/antibiotic ear drop. A month of the drops and I have seen no improvement. I am having balance problems now and I hear little bubbles popping. I did see an emergency room (ER) doctor for the ear pain between the ENT visits and he gave me a diagnosis of ET dysfunction. The ENT should have known this! So I started allergy medications and they helped everything but the pain and tube draining. Out of desperation I mentioned it to my chiropractor and asked if there was anything he could do. He did acupressure around my ear front and back and rubbed in a downward motion along the glands of my neck. I have had 2 treatments and finally my ear will pop. It isn't staying open a long time but some relief is better than none! He said a few more treatments should clear it up. Find someone that does acupuncture and see if this can help you too. Good luck!

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Comment from: bugsy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 22

I don"t have a blockage but have had problems with my eustachian tubes, I can hear my heartbeat, and I have tinnitus. I have been tested for superior canal dehiscence but I am told I don"t have it. However I"m unsure that the doctors here know how to do the test. I don"t know what to do. One ear feels full all the time. The other has returned to normal on its own.

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