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Hearing pounding heart in my right ear
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Hearing pounding heart in my right ear

My PVCs have lessened lately, which is good.  But instead I often have a hard, pounding heartbeat that is normal. Sometimes my pulse is in the 70's when this happens, and sometimes faster after running up stairs or mild exercising. It's regular, but beats hard. I can feel it in my neck, back, even my head. The most annoying part is that I can hear the pounding beat in my right ear (which is partially plugged much of the time).

I also have allergy issues (sore, runny eyes and headache around my eyes). I've been to a ear-nose-throat doctor and he prescribed Nasonex (steroid nasal spray) to see if that would help the eyes and the plugged ear. It helped all but the ear and the pounding beat I sometimes feel in the ear.  Now I need an MRI of my head with contrast, scheduled for next week.

Has anyone else experienced this?  I'm kind of concerned because there can be tumors, blood vessel blockages, and other scary stuff. I hope those are ruled out. (I can't have antibiotics unless I'm on a ventilator because they all close my throat, so surgery is especially risky for me.)

Just wondering whether any of you have had pulsitile tinnitus (pounding heartbeat in an ear), and if so, what have you experienced?  I don't like MRIs to begin with, so that's making me anxious too.  But I'm hoping the heartbeat in my right ear thing will somehow go away. I get it some of the time every day. Anyone have advice for me?
Tags: Heart
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
Don't feel alone- I've been through a nightmare few months with this. I have a very fast heartrate (even on Atenolol) and I can also feel my heart beat all through my body. If I have a bath before bed (which makes my heart go mad!) I can feel the bed shaking as my heart is pounding so hard! Very disconcerting. I also struggle with feeling like a zombie on the beta blockers, but life without them was much worse. I haven't had an MRI- in fact I haven't mentioned the pulsatile tinnitus to my doctor yet, as I always seem to have such a long list of symptoms to discuss. I'm struggling with a post-viral syndrome at the moment which has caused all sorts of problems throughout my body. I hope your MRI goes well- try going through song lyrics in your head- works for me during unpleasant cardiac tests!! Let us know how you get on.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
I have had pulsatile tinnitus twice for about 18 hours at a time in the past few weeks. Mine is in my right ear too. I have sinus tachycardia and am on 50mg atenolol daily. I wondered whether it might be related to the medication? Sorry I can't be more help, I hope you get the answers you need.
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1182699_tn?1297578384
I too get the heartbeat feeling in my right ear. I have PVC's, PAC's, tachy and take atenolol 12.5. I have terrible allergies and sinus trouble and my right ear is always plugged. I feel just about every heart beat when I am sitting or lying down and I feel my pulse all over...fingers, toes, ear, you name it, I feel it. This has been going on for years now and really can't remember how long ago it started...it has become my normal, which I really dislike. I hope you feel better soon.
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Avatar_n_tn
While I'm sorry you also get this, at least I don't feel so alone.  The doctor really had me concerned, and I don't suppose I'll have a very worry-free weekend. (The MRI/MRS is Monday afternoon).

I don't take atenolol or any other beta blocker because I tried one once for migraine headaches and even a low dose made me feel like a zombie.  My normally rather low pulse and blood pressure plummeted and I didn't even have the energy to go to work.  It also increased my acid reflux. My cardiologist said I probably didn't need a beta blocker anyway, because they slow the heartbeat. My heart arrhythmia tends to get much worse when my heartbeat is slow, and lessens when my pulse is over 85. So I've just had to deal with the 8500 PVCs daily for a few years now.  Lately, for some reason (as I mentioned earlier) the PVCs have lessened. Instead I now have a pounding heart.

I, too, can feel it elsewhere, especially in the top of my head, back of my head where it meets my neck, and sometimes my back. This started 4 weeks ago and I have it about half the time, sometimes more. Very annoying.

Did either of you have an MRI?   I hate the darn things.  Even with earplugs or music and my eyes covered, the clanging and banging makes my regular tinnitus (high pitched) worse and I feel rather claustrophobic.  I managed to stick it out the last time I had one (5 or 6 years ago), but I felt really strange afterward, and my arthritic neck and back were sore (from lying still for nearly an hour).  But, at this point, I'll just do my best to deal with the MRI, and hope that they don't find anything serious wrong.  

Thank you so much for your replies.  I don't feel quite so alone, and I know that not everyone who has this necessarily will have something serious wrong. You two are the best.
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Avatar_n_tn
Oops...I meant to say "MRI/MRA" (contrast dye used to check blood vessels, etc.) not "MRI/MRS". (Sorry.)
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
Don't feel alone- I've been through a nightmare few months with this. I have a very fast heartrate (even on Atenolol) and I can also feel my heart beat all through my body. If I have a bath before bed (which makes my heart go mad!) I can feel the bed shaking as my heart is pounding so hard! Very disconcerting. I also struggle with feeling like a zombie on the beta blockers, but life without them was much worse. I haven't had an MRI- in fact I haven't mentioned the pulsatile tinnitus to my doctor yet, as I always seem to have such a long list of symptoms to discuss. I'm struggling with a post-viral syndrome at the moment which has caused all sorts of problems throughout my body. I hope your MRI goes well- try going through song lyrics in your head- works for me during unpleasant cardiac tests!! Let us know how you get on.
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Avatar_n_tn
The MRI/MRA was a nightmare. I've had them before and they weren't that bad.  But now they have a new MRI machine and it's at least ten times louder.  Instead of what sounds like metal clanking, it's electronic buzzes that are so loud it makes you want to do just about anything to get away from it.  There's a cage that fits around your head (leaves the bottom open), and they put in the usual earplugs, then a headset over it to further muffle the sound.  But in my case, they apparently didn't put the earplug in tightly enough, because it loosened during the MRI.  I didn't know that, of course, and had to lie totally still. I wondered why the MRI unit would actually vibrate at times with the loud buzzing/pulsing, and also wondered why the music I'd selected was never played.  In the past, I was always able to hear what the technicians were saying to me through the headset, but not this time. I knew they were talking to me, but could only make out about half the words.  (They were telling me how long I had left, and that I was doing fine, keeping very still...they told me this later when they realized I hadn't hear them.) I think that because of the somewhat loose earplug under the headset, my bad ear was totally plugged. Instead of the usual ringing in it, there was also a loud hissing (like a rush of air) for the rest of the day.  The next day I had less hissing, but the ringing is louder than  it used to be and I fear my hearing may have been damaged.  
The whole time I was having the MRI, my heart kept pounding hard, mainly because each time a new buzzing sound started, it would be so loud it startled me. It was all I could do to brace myself so I wouldn't move my head.  I kept thinking that this would really frighten a child.   So much for the new machine.  That's progress?  they say it gives a better image.

I have to go to town today for an appointment with my ENT doctor, to get the results.  I'm so hoping that they didn't find anything serious, or anything requiring surgery/or an antibiotic.  I've nearly died several times from antibiotics because they rapidly close my throat. I'm trying not to worry, but...

I'll let you know what I find out.   I hoope I didn't scare you with my MRI story.  I've had others at different  places and they weren't nearly as loud.  I'm sorry you're dealing with this  problem too. Thanks for letting me vent about this.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks so much for replying, everyone.  It helps a lot to feel less alone.
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Avatar_f_tn
That sounds awful! I'm sorry you had such a hard time- feel free to vent whenever. How did your results go? I know this is pointless advice, as it's so hard, but do try not to worry so much- the anxiety will speed your heart rate up and make you worry even more!
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Avatar_n_tn
I got some good information from the MRI.  As some people get older, their blood vessels can enlarge a bit or can lie closer to the ear itself,  When their hearts beat faster or harder (under stress, after large meals, or with exercise) the blood pulsing through the jugular can be heard in the ear. That's what's going on in my case. No cure, but at least I know it's not a tumor or a problem requiring surgery or antibiotics.

I also found out that what I thought was sinus problems is really allergies, and I'm using Nasonex steroidal nasal spray. So far I'm doing okay with that and my headaches (around my eyes), the plugged ear sensation, and the red, teary eyes are getting a lot better.

The doctor asked if I also feel my heart pounding in my chest, back or neck when I hear it in my ear.  I said yes, and he thought I should mention that to my doctor at my next annual checkup, which I will do. I learned something from the MRI, and am so grateful I was able to rule out some things that could have been worse.

As for my right ear (the one where the earplug wasn't in tight enough during the MRI), it's pretty much returned to normal. I have the usual ringing in it that I've had for years, but the rushing air sound is gone and it's not plugged all the time. If I have to have an MRI again, I'll be very sure those earplugs are in tightly.

Feeling greatly relieved these days. At least when I hear the pounding, I don't get anxious, and that, in itself, reduces the pounding some.

I noticed that you call yourself "teacheruk," so I guess you're a teacher.  (?)  I was a high school English teacher for 31 years here in the U.S.  I'm semi-retired now (have a home business). I  miss teaching, but because of the antibiotic issues I have, I can't afford to catch bacterial things like strep throat, etc. Too much of that in schools, unfortunately.  I do miss my students, though. Thanks for your support. Let me know how you're doing now and then.
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Avatar_n_tn
I've been wondering how you are doing with the heartbeat pounding. I still have it.  Sometimes it's very loud and my heart beats somewhat faster. Other times it's less loud.  I have no idea what triggers it.

Hoping you are doing all right.  Please reply if you get a chance.
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