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Myringotomy recovery difficult
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Myringotomy recovery difficult

I had been posting as "post myringotomy" and reported that my doctor said all was well in the healing process.   But the rest of the recovery is very strange and it troubles me, considering all should be well.

I keep getting a sensation of "need to pop" in that ear.   I can hear, which I could not do before the myringotomy when the fluid was removed.   But it feels plugged or clogged.   I know it isn't the exact same thing as it will clear on occasion.   I can bite hard or chew and it will pop somewhat and feel better, even if just for a few seconds.

What is troublesome is the horrible ringing.  Every morning I hope I will wake with less but this morning there was more.    

The ear infection I had which clogged my ear so severely before the surgery went on for 3 1/2 weeks and led to a lot of tinnitis.    The doctor said that the long time the fluid was there influenced the ear drum and that now the ear drum must get back to normal.   I can understand that.  

What is strange is that it almost seems like I feel any air or fluid going through the tubes.   It feels like a strange pressure gradient change.   Somehow I am so sensitive to this and feel a need to pop all day.   I wonder if this is the eardrum getting back to normal.   The not knowing what is happening is driving me crazy..  

Incidentally, I have trouble doing the unclog procedure he told me about (blow with nostrils held, yawn, swallow) as my right sinus seems always clogged as well.   It is like blowing and getting suction in return.    I also have a deviated nasal septum on that side.   There is a lot for me to address with the ENT next week.

Basically, I am wondering what it is about eardrums, fluid/air normally going through the system, etc that would bring about these sensations in a healing eardrum which was affected by infection for so much time.    

Thanks for any feedback.
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10 Comments Post a Comment
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242516_tn?1368227505
"The not knowing what is happening is driving me crazy..."  You shouldn't be going crazy, ask your ENT about these symptoms to see if it's reasonable at this point of your recovery, since it's hard for us to say without knowing how long it's been, and what you had done

The trouble many people have unclogging their ears has to do with the blockage of the eustachian tube that drains the ear.  Nasal steroids following rinsing with saline can help.
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Avatar_n_tn
I think I may have worded my posting badly.

My problem came after a bad cold that resulted in an ear infection that is now ok.    The myringotomy was to remove the fluid from the infection.   To my knowledge I have no other blockage unless my chronically stuffed sinus on the same side as that ear is a factor.   The doc gave me nasonex to help keep things clear.

I probably need to ask about what sensations are normal when an operation is done on the eardrum.   In my case a tube could not be inserted after the myringotomy.   I was told my eardrum was affected by the pressure of the fluid there for 3 1/2 weeks and that adjustment would take a bit.

As I have need to pop, ringing, pressure feelings, and itchiness ( 1 1/2 week since surgery with apparent good outcome as of 4 days ago) I am curious if this is normal when the eardrum was affected by the infection for this length of time.    I must add my symptoms were quite severe and affected my hearing a great deal.    That seems to be much better.

Thanks.
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242516_tn?1368227505
Nasonex is a nasal steroid.  Glad you're taking that.

Yes, ask what sensations are normal with recovery of your surgery.

Feeling a "need to pop, ringing, pressure feelings, and itchiness" all can be from clogged eustachian tube leading to serous otitis which the effusion was drained from by your myringotomy
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Avatar_n_tn
In trying to help my condition I am learning a few things.   Yes, everything I am discovering seems to indicate I am sensing fluid behind the eardrum.    What is becoming an issue is the "why".

Before I had the myringotomy I not only had a cold but a clogged sinus on the same side as the affected ear.   I still have it, although not as bad.   In addition there is a deviated nasal septum on that side.

No doubt the more clear I keep the sinuses the clearer my ear.   Last night I slept in a semi-upright position, allowing a clear drainage from sinus to throat.   In addition I used a stronger brand of Sudacare plug in the wall.   I set it on medium and this morning I could clearly smell the vapors.

Not only were my sinuses open but the full feeling in my ear was not there, there was no "need to pop", and the ear sounds were greatly diminished.   When I got up, the sinus filled, it was harder to get air through that nostril, the ear filled, the ringing came back a bit, and I needed to pop.

Clogged eustachian tubes get a lot of press, but what about clogged sinuses?   I know from both high school and university science that fluid in a tube plugged at either end will not flow.   It seems the eustachian tube can be opened and the sinus clogged and the same effect can come about.

I see my ENT on the 29th and will be running this all past him.   In the meantime I will be using the nasonex, the sudacare plug, sleeping semi-upright, etc.    Perhaps my sinuses/deviated nasal septum are what needs addressing.    

Thanks for your response and letting me know Nasonex is a nasal steroid.   Everything I read tells me that's the way to go.
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242516_tn?1368227505
Good luck with your ENT appointment next week.  Good thing to run by him.

Yes, nasal steroids are very helpful, if you can get thru to him, ask if trying it twice a day before your visit next week may help more.  That's more than recommended, but if your doctor says it's ok to try, it may help.

It helps even more to do saline nasal rinses before the steroids.

Thanks for sharing so much.  It helps other people find help here at medhelp.org
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Avatar_n_tn
Not to run on....but this is, as I've been calling it, the "nightmare that keeps on giving!"

Here comes the holiday weekend, no appt for over a week, and my ear began ringing terribly again.  The ringing has to be the biggest quality of life issue.

I'm not a pest with doctors.  I have many health problems and none of my docs...until this one...has been pestered by my calls.   I know docs are busy and don't need bothering for every concern.   Also, I know that the more you call the more of a hypochondriac you can be considered.   So I'm not one to call and call.

I had no choice.   Called again, with an attitude from the secretary (she's apparently never had this), and this time we're trying more predinosone.    Not a bad idea for a few days.   If it is eustachian tube blockage this could help.   I hate prednisone, but I will bite the bullet.

Yet I was quite upset.   The answer was "if this doesn't work you'll need a new appt to do more hearing tests, etc, etc."    We just did the myringotomy and didn't try to insert a tube (he said my ear canal was too small....I'm 54 years old!).   I'm miserable with ringing in the ear that is loud and persisting for over 5 weeks.  

So, I got an appt with my husband's ENT...who I wanted to see in the first place.  As I was having serious problems with the ear when I called him, and he was just back from out of town, I couldn't get an appt with him quick enough.   My GP recommended the other man and at least I did get some treatment.    But I think it is definitely time to change.

I'll see him on Monday and I don't know how to approach this.   I don't want to "dis" the first ENT but the issue of the tube not being placed must be told.   And I have been through 2 rounds of biaxin and now 2 rounds of prednisone.   If the problem is persisting after this round of prednisone I really don't want to wait and wait through test and test.    Been there and done that.   I hope I can ask if he's able to insert the tube the other could not and ask if he believes that would help my situation.

I'll continue the nasal spray and try your advice.  I have a bottle of saline spray here and will use that before the steroids.    Hopefully the prednisone will be what I need for now.   Then the new ENT can address all the issues.

For me a merry Christmas will be one without ear ringing, fluid, popping, itching, etc!

Thanks for your post.   And I will continue to share.   I know I often look for things others may have experienced and this "nightmare" of mine may prevent one for someone else!

Gloria
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242516_tn?1368227505
Many ENTs will order the audiology test to be done before the visit, so that the test results can be available at the time of your next visit.

If you need a tube, an experienced ENT should be able to.

Glad you'll try the saline before steroids.  Let us know how it goes.  It certainly can help others not have to experience your "nightmare" as you keep us up to date on your progress.
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Avatar_n_tn
I visited the new ENT and got some questions answered that the first one never discussed.  
First, the horrible ringing goes away.    Of course he said that getting upset will make it worse.  He didn't have to tell me that!   That one I'd figured out!   (And he ended up prescribing xanax to calm me down).

Also, popping is a good sign.    I've been getting a lot of popping.    

Apparently the symptoms I've been having, which are normal for recovery, are fine.   The problem has been that I was not prepared for them.

He also looked in my ears and said it would be hard to do a myringotomy on me.   Maybe I really do have small ear canals.   I will never understand how this is done on small children.  

Anyway...the ticket seems to be patience and trusting that things are really ok.  

One thing I've learned.....ringing ears are worse than pain!!!

Gloria
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242516_tn?1368227505
Watch out for the xanax, since it belongs to the benzodiazepine class of medications that can be addictive.

Another ENT may have less trouble doing a myringotomy on you.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been experiencing clogged ears for about a year, I have had every test known to man, The ENT can not see anything worning not can my regular doctor, it is so annoying I do get a lot of chronic dizziness also, can any one help, lately I have been experiencing extreme itchiness to my left ear....


Thanks you
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