Patient Comments: Eustachian Tube Problems - Experience

Question:

Please describe your experience with eustachian tube problems. Submit Your Comment

Comment from: marmielin, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: November 16

I have been wearing hearing aids for approximately five years. The left one has been without problems from day one. The right has had problems, with replacement, three times. I have a fabulous audiologist who works in the office of a well-known ENT in my city. For some time I have had a fullness and a hollow sound in my right ear. We thought the new hearing aid was going to be the answer, but after receiving it yesterday we realized that is not the problem. Even without the hearing aid, I have the fullness in my ear. She approached the doctor. My pressure is fine, she thought perhaps he should look at me. He said the problem is I have lost too much weight. I have been the same weight for five years. I am very thin, but I have no problem with my left ear eustachian tube. Just the right. Very frustrated.

Comment from: Tfhj, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 30

My eustachian tube problems started 3 months ago with ear wax. I have single sided hearing with 40 percent SNHL (sensorineural hearing loss) in the hearing ear and started experiencing tinnitus (roaring). My ear felt full and has a cool wet burning sensation occurring daily. The fullness and burning happens off and on all day. Sometimes the burning last for hours. I am learning to manage the roaring with a low salt diet. My hearing often sounds muffled especially without my hearing aid, but my ENT says my hearing is not being damaged. The burning and fullness is so disturbing. My ENT told me to take Allegra daily. I also take Benadryl at night.

Comment from: vamark, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: November 23

For over five years I have had a blockage in my middle ear that prevents the fluid from discharging through the eustachian tube. An ENT prescribed a steroid which I took for a week. The only thing it did was to make me jittery and sleepless. I am able to remove a small amount of fluid by holding my nose and blowing, but I can never get enough out to hear properly. I also have a constant ringing in the ear.

Comment from: Tjp3302, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 13

I was walking through the house while cleaning my ear with a Q-tip. I ran into the door frame and it pushed the Q-tip all the way through my eardrum. It bleed for about a day. That was in August. My eustachian tube is still swollen shut. Hearing test is still not normal. I had allergy testing the other day to see if that is what is hindering the healing before having to get a tube put in. I don't think it is the allergies, personally.

Comment from: Kajltd, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 09

I went to an ENT doctor because of vertigo and whooshing sound in right ear. After MRI of brain and VNG (videonystagmography) test I now have sudden hearing loss in my left ear along with many phantom noises. All the ENT doctor said was that the tests are normal. His staff said I could see him for a follow up in March. I don't want to wait that long to find out what is going on. I still have some balance issues but they seem better.

Comment from: Bean, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: November 01

I have ear ache, intermittent feeling of pressure in the ear and dizziness because of eustachian tube problems.

Comment from: James, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: July 14

Air from fan, air conditioner, and wind irritates my left ear to the point of feeling like I have fluid in my ear and it aches constantly.

Comment from: Texas Lady, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: December 31

My left jaw hurt for a couple days along with my left ear feeling stopped up. I've had a life-long problem of my ears making too much wax. It was getting worse so I went to the doctor and sure enough both ears were severely impacted with wax. It's impossible to get it out myself because it is too far down and impacted. The wax was slowly dug out of both ears as well as the water pressure hose used on them. This is the first time it's also caused my jaw to hurt and the doctor said it's because my eustachian tube was inflamed. I have no ear infection but much inflammation. I was prescribed a steroid to rid the condition. Hope this helps someone.

Comment from: keegans56, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: December 16

Late spring this year I experienced sudden hearing loss (SHL) in my right ear immediately after being in a severe lightning/thunderstorm that lasted four hours, with a sharp change in barometric pressure. Before this I've always enjoyed near perfect hearing in both ears. After no response to oral steroids the ENT sent me a few days later for a series of three procedures having the steroids placed into my inner ear, after severing my eardrum. This was painful and still did not restore my hearing, or stop the annoying fullness or the intermittent head pain. I was given a 'soft' diagnosis for Meniere's disorder, but am wondering if patulous eustachian tube may be more right on.

Tips for Treating Ear Infections
Comment from: MistyDawn, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 16

I was born with chronic ear disease and had 5 surgeries from ages 2 to 10 for eustachian tubes, tonsillectomy, and adenoid removal at age 2. The 5th surgery was to remove tubes from behind my eardrum. They were put there because the other tubes kept falling out. I'm now 46 and have had maybe 6 ear infections as an adult. The last one was 4 years ago, a bulbous ear infection and it was excruciating. The past few years, about once a week, sometimes less sometimes more fluid drains from my left ear. No sign of infection but occasionally it hurts mildly when fluid drains.

Comment from: A Howzer, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: August 07

I am nerve deaf in left ear. I have background noises in right ear which causes hearing level to decrease. I wear a digital hearing aid which works well. My eustachian tube frequently fills up and blocks my ability to hear well. In the past coughing or swallowing worked well (I also have post nasal drip), but I now have to clear my throat sometimes forcefully to clear my eustachian tube. Then within minutes, I can feel it filling up again. I need an ENT/post nasal drip specialist! I have to do this so often sometimes I get very embarrassed (very noisy).

Comment from: hollallen, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: June 13

I would strongly suggest one sees a chiropractor. I am not saying all eustachian tube problems are related but mine sure was. I suffered with allergies and a blocked right ear with vertigo for a year. The doctors (2 of them) said I had eustachian tube blockage and put me on nasal steroids for a year with minimal results. They were getting ready to send me to an ENT and I just felt it was structural. I went to a chiropractor and x-rays showed my 2nd and 3rd vertebrae were misaligned and squeezing on nerves affecting my sinuses and ears. With neck and spinal manipulation, within 3 days my hearing returned, dizziness left, and my sinuses cleared. I still have ways to go but I have found my problem. If you have tried everything, I strongly suggest seeing a chiropractor.

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.

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!

Comment from: Sandy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 23

I'm a retired nurse that had to retire due to significant hearing loss in left ear and moderate in right! Significant enough to make me disability eligible! I've had an ongoing blocked eustachian tube now for almost 2 years on left ear. My first ENT had me on prednisone off and on to no avail. I'm now seeing another ENT who has tried tubes which apparently is not helping! I had a CT scan that showed a severe deviated septum and the ENT doctor thinks straightening would help, however insurance doesn't agree and surgery is on hold until my doctor can conference with them!

Comment from: jkcox014, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: January 17

Loud music from 4th grade to the present day has caused my ear damage. I have blocking in the left ear every day and every morning when I wake up. Hearing specialists and audiologists have confirmed I have significant hearing loss. I cannot hear less than 40 dB of high frequency or low frequency. I have moderate hearing loss in my left ear, mild hearing loss in my right. It's a shame since I'm so young and didn't acknowledge I was damaging my ears due to loud sounds for constant amounts of time. My suggestion is to not exceed 60% volume through earphones. Wear earplugs if you work with loud sound (live shows, sound engineering) and give your ears a break after 1 hour of close listening to music. That's my advice for anyone! So I am not sure about how to handle my Eustachian tube problem. It's bad every day. Two years of this consistent problem! It's the worst when I wake up to start the day. While driving through the mountains I'm constantly blowing out of my nose and people think I'm oddly snickering; pretty annoying.

Tips for Treating Ear Infections
Comment from: Little Tom, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: December 17

I had my ear irrigated at the nurse treatment room at my medical center about a month ago. There was a huge buildup of wax which caused me to hear my own heartbeat upon any exertion. The nurse flushed out the wax using hot water and soap in a large syringe with no needle. After the treatment she determined that my ear was bleeding around the eardrum probably from the irritation from the irrigation procedure. Since then I have had constant post-nasal drip and a mostly continuous feeling of fullness in my ear. I cannot relieve it by the methods mentioned in previous postings.

Comment from: A C, 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: November 14

I wear hearing aids, very often I cannot hear anything, due to my blocked eustachian tube. I will hear well after I blow my ear with my hand holding my nose to blow it. But my left ear sometime does not respond to this treatment. I try on chewing gum or nose spray, but it does not work for me. I was told to keep blowing my ear. Sometimes I am very discouraged by this condition. I often have to clear my throat as I feel something in there. My tonsils were removed several years back.

Comment from: JEF45, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: November 06

I had upper respiratory cold 1 month ago with ear and sinus infection. I had to take 2 antibiotics and a steroid. All is better except my ears. I have never experienced ear problems ever before. I have tried drinking gallons of water, Mucinex D, heating pad on ears, steam heat and seen my ENT 4 times and there is no wax or fluid in the ear. My ears remain closed with intermittent popping with reduced hearing and fullness. I have tried all home remedies and nothing works. The noise is driving me crazy and the loss of hearing is very scary!

Comment from: Leolyn, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 04

I"ve experienced some type of fluid build-up in my eustachian tubes without relief and moderate hearing loss for over two years. I don"t understand why a small tube with video can"t bring inserted up the eustachian tube from the nose and flush out the gunk whatever is in there, then lubricate and remove. We have video tubes that go into the mallets places, why not the eustachian tube!

Comment from: Frank, 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: February 10

I have an intermittent sound in my right ear that sounds like popping bubbles. If I lay on my right side the sound usually goes away. Laying on my left side it will start up again. I wear hearing aids on both sides but have stopped using the one for my right ear since the strange noise. Sometimes the noise gets so intense it sounds like someone arc welding.

Comment from: 66, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: December 05

I had a tube inserted into my ear. I am 66 years old. When tube was exiting my ear it became imbedded in wax. I now have liquid in my ear again.

Comment from: nattyg, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 06

I am only assuming that I have eustachian tube dysfunction. I have fullness in my right ear daily, and the "popping" sensation at times. My balance has been affected greatly by this. I started taking generic sleep aids to help me sleep at night, and was pleased to find that their main component is the diphenhydramine used to treat allergy symptoms. This helps a lot. I read somewhere to blow a balloon to remove blockage, and my physician prescribed a nasal spray that I'm reluctant to take because I didn't think I had allergies. I will be seeing my third ENT soon, and I am going to mention the tubes used to open blocked ear cavities. I want to encourage anyone who reads this to keep a record of your symptoms and show it to an ENT so that he/she can closely evaluate you and find the best treatment for you. Having ENT problems makes other people think you're a hypochondriac (forgive my spelling, you all know what I mean) because they can't see the pain you're in or the frustration you experience.

Comment from: 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 17

I have to say anyone experiencing popping, pressure, annoying clicking all day long go for the tubes. I have had great success w/ ear tubes due to these annoying symptoms. My only problem is getting them to stay. First time had them done in ENT office, one came out 6 months later so the doctor decided to try a longer lasting tube in "OR" could last 3-5 yrs, just found out yesterday left ear tube is starting to come out and my miserable symptoms are all back. I am 37 and I hate the fact that I will probably be dealing with this the rest of my life. I had 100% relief after tubes; I just wish they would stay.

Comment from: kates, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

Two years ago I got a sinus infection, the only one I've ever had. I took antibiotics and it cleared up, but my ET (eustachian tubes) have been really annoying since then. Even the slightest change of altitude while driving usually causes my ears to clog, and click, and then I have to yawn like crazy, swallow, and blow my nose to relieve the pressure. I didn't know until a few months ago there was such a syndrome as "ET dysfunction" but now that I've happily diagnosed myself, I still get especially bad ears during a cold or right before I get sick. It lasts for months after the cold is gone. As far as advice goes- I've gotten really good at yawning -tilting my head back, specifically concentrating on tightening the muscles at the back of the throat. This works for me until I find something more lasting.

Tips for Treating Ear Infections
Comment from: mia, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

I was being treated for an ear infection (swimmers ear), and while on antibiotics, the pain and fever went away, but I began to feel extremely full of pressure in the infected ear. It has been a week now, and nothing seems to give me lasting relief. The ear will not "pop" when forced, decongestants help briefly, but the feeling of pressure and fullness does not seem to leave for long. Thinking it was wax or some sort of build up, I have begun to irrigate the ear with a mix of peroxide and water- which helps for a little while as well, but the feelings always return.

Comment from: dew, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

One of my brothers and I have been plagued by ear infections since childhood. We have very similar facial features and jaws. I think the bone structures have been the cause of the eustachian tube dysfunctions in both of us. My tinnitus has recently become more constant, especially in the quiet times. Sleeping has become a challenge. My brother has had eustachian tube manipulation done by a chiropractor. It helps to open the tube and it has given him some relief. I have not yet tried this but may have to soon. With the slightest cold or allergic reaction I get fluid in the ear(s) and the tinnitus starts.

Comment from: mor, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: June 30

A lot of times the eustachian tube problem is TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder).

Comment from: casey, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: November 07

I was recently diagnosed with a eustachian tube blockage. My doctor suggested that it might be a result of a flu shot.

Comment from: frustrated, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: October 24

My last set of permanent Eustachian tubes came out in 1995 and I have dealt with this since I was 43. I have found that rinsing with saline nasally and using Afrin nose spray helps. I do have allergies and I take fexofenadine (Allegra) and montelukast (Singulair) daily.

Comment from: John D, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: September 25

I am 64 years old and my left eustachian tube has been blocked for the past 20 years. Over that time I have had several grommets fitted, the last one staying in for almost 12 months. They have provided relief but within one to two weeks of 'falling out', the problem returns. The eustachian tube fills with fluid and then gradually becomes painful. Antibiotics do not seem to have any effect. My Ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist says it is permanently blocked by scar tissue and nothing can be done surgically to fix it.

Comment from: Sunshine, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: August 27

With my Eustachian tube problems, I have severe pressure in my head and ears as well as my face behind my nose. I get migraines weekly and pretty much live with a headache daily. I am a healthy 38-year-old female. I've never been sick other than the yearly cold. I have been to the doctors several times. I've had CT Scans of my sinuses and brain (both came back normal), and blood work to try to figure out what is wrong with me. My eyes even hurt from it. I went to the eye doctor who gave me steroids. They relive the pain, but this is only masking the problem, and I don't want to take them forever. I know they aren't good for you.

Comment from: Cindy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 27

I have had a blocked Eustachian tube in my ear for seven years, and I also suffer from tinnitus. They tell me they can do nothing for me. I take Ambien to sleep at night.

Published: July 24

I've had eustachian tube problems since I was a child. I'm 37 years old now. I have significant hearing loss and damage to my ear drums from the fluid buildup. I was able to get a tube in my left ear a couple of years ago, which relieved the intense pressure I had. I just take allergy medicine on a regular basis and am learning sign language to deal with the hearing loss. I always have ear pain and popping when I swallow. I'm resigned to the condition as doctors can't help.

Published: July 14

The left side of my nose and ear always feels plugged, I have allergic asthma and notice that when these symptoms are at their worst it aggravates my asthma.

Published: July 09

I have suffered sinus problems and reoccurring ear infections since a child. Now 41 I have a hearing loss in both ears. I have had one blocked Eustachian tube for the past 18 months which has made my hearing suffer, making wearing a hearing aid virtually worthless. I have tried decongestants, antihistamines, nasal sprays, trying to equalize my ear, which works temporarily but blocks within seconds. I have seen an ENT specialist whom would not look at tubes in my ear. I am now going to see another specialist to seek a second opinion. I have also been told that Cranial Sacral Therapy may help strengthen the surrounding muscles thereby helping to allow the tube to function. I have heard that this has been of some success to some patients.

Tips for Treating Ear Infections
Published: June 24

I have had eustachian tube dysfunction for three years. I did not know what it was then. I just knew I couldn't here out of one of my ear. A doctor sent me to an audiologist who did a hearing test and said everything was fine. I continued to have problems off and on taking over-the-counter medication. In December of 2006, I finally found out I had fluid on my eardrum. Then another doctor told me I have eustachian tube dysfunction. She prescribed a nasal spray for three weeks and said nothing could really be done unless I could not live with the symptoms. Doctors don't like to put tubes in adults' ears. After that, I went to an ear, nose throat doctor (ENT) because of the fluid, dizziness, and headaches. The ENT said he didn't see anything and did another hearing test and said I was fine. Right now is the worst it's ever been. I have had four migraines in the past few weeks. The nasal wash gave me relief from the pressure in my frontal area, but no success as of yet with opening the tubes.

Published: June 11

On and off for the last 10 years I have experienced a muffled effect in either one or both of my ears (like being underwater). It used to happen occasionally perhaps twice a year, but at the moment it happens every day, sometimes several times a day. My doctor told me nothing can be done about it, but I am very worried by this diagnosis as I am a teacher and find it very hard to hear properly when affected by this condition. I cannot understand why it happens so frequently now. 'Popping' my ears, as suggested by my GP (general practitioner), does not work and his suggestion that it is caused by a mild infection or being run down also does not explain the regularity with which this is occurring.

Published: June 11

I began with an occasional hissing sound. This progressed to a feeling of being closed and louder hissing. Sounds were muffled. I also thought I had wax build-up but a remedy did nothing. The doctor said I had a clogged eustachian tube, and I should chew gum and use a nasal spray. After three months with no relief, I went to an ENT (ear, nose throat) doctor, who first tested my hearing. I have no nerve damage or hearing loss. He prescribed a different nasal spray. I have now been dealing with this for a year and no one seems to know what is wrong. All looks in my ears result in the same statement. They don't see anything wrong. The noise/static is driving me insane and is getting louder by the week.

Published: June 10

My ear seems too open, I hear my voice reverberate inside my head when I talk, and I can only relieve it by sniffing often. By the end of the day I have a severe headache that could almost be described as a bubble inside my head, and the pain goes all the way to the root of my cerebellum. I have had cat scans and MRI's to no avail. I was prescribed medication before to open my eustachian tube which made it even worse, then, another doctor decided it was too open. I will be seeing an ENT specialist again in a week or so and I wonder what they will tell me next. My family doctor looked at my ear drum and said it was dull, but could not tell me anything else. One more thing, if I drink a caffeinated drink my headache gets relieved, most of the time.

Published: June 09

I have been told I have small eustachian tubes for an adult and suffer from allergies, lately I have noticed I wake up with a very small amount of fluid in my ear each morning.

Published: June 09

Three days ago I started to hear hissing noises in my ear rather like static, later that day I noticed that I had an almost complete loss of hearing in my left ear together with a feeling of fullness or blockage in that ear. I thought originally that I had an earwax blockage so I went to my doctor to have it syringed out. He found that there was no earwax build-up and thought there might be a build-up of fluid in the inner ear perhaps due to a blockage of the eustachian tube. He said not much could be done except to use a nasal decongestant. I find the hearing loss quite worrying.

Comment from: 55-64 Female Published: October 06

I have a blocked eustachian tube and have been prescribed various allergy pills and nasal sprays, by several doctors, none of which work. I have had some relief from Mucinex D which is an expectorant and nasal decongestant. It does thin and loosen the congestion. When you swallow while massaging in front of the ear it helps drain it. I hope it helps someone else too.

Comment from: 1soprano, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: October 06

Eustachian tube blockage has resulted for me in continuous feeling of fullness in the ear, and particularly distressing, distortion in hearing and partial loss of hearing in the affected ear. Aggressive allergy control has been partially helpful. This condition came on quite suddenly.

Comment from: 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: October 06

I have had tubes/grommets fitted in my right ear, many times due to a blocked eustachian tube. The specialist says the eustachian tube has collapsed? Surely in this day and age there must be something that can be done other than grommets fitted? When you read the other comments on this, you realize sufferers are almost helpless.

Tips for Treating Ear Infections
Comment from: 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: October 06

My ears never fully pop. I can yawn and yawn and I will always hear them pop, but it will never be enough. I also always feel like I have earwax or water in my ears, but they are always clean. I've had this for about 4 years now.

Comment from: Ear Crazy, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 17

I have had a problem with my ear feeling full of "something" for many years. It is not a wax problem. I now live in a very humid climate and it is getting worse and very frustrating. It is worse in my right ear when my head turns to the left. I can't sing or talk loud because my voice all of sudden blares in my head. Often when I am talking, suddenly my voice is heard very loudly on the inside. It is seriously affecting my quality of life and makes me grumpy.

Comment from: Male Published: August 04

Some people can open Eustachian tubes at will. This shows as a click and then one can hear their own voice more loudly. It seems similar to moving ones ears, which also most people cannot do.

Published: August 04

I have problem with allergies and my ears. They don't ever pop or feel full or any of the other symptoms described. They simply itch like crazy and no amount of ear or throat rubbing relieves it. Benedryl is the only thing that really works, but that puts me to sleep. I just wish someone could tell me why they are itching, not just tell me to take a Benedryl.

Published: July 28

My daughter has suffered from dysfunctional eustachian tube since birth. Besides a tube what else can we do to make her tube healthier to function on its own. We have tried from Rhinocort to Afrin nose sprays praying that it would help drain the fluid and nothing has helped. She is a teenager now and still suffers from this problem. I understand there are many children and well as adults that have this problem. I thought by now that be something medically i.e. surgically that could restore her tube.

Tips for Treating Ear Infections
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