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Hearing my pulse in my ear
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Hearing my pulse in my ear

I can hear my pulse in my left ear.  It is a rushing pulse sound. It is most noticeable in the morning when I wake up and the surroundings are quiet.  I have heard this a few times before in the last ten years, but recently it has seemed louder and for about two weeks happens everyday.  I am relatively active with hiking and biking. I am told consitently that I have normal blood pressure.   This was true at my last check-up two months ago.  I climbed two 13,000 ft mountains this summer without experiencing any dizziness.  I don't smoke, I'm overweight but not quit obese.  I drink 1-3 alcoholic drinks a week.  

Could I be hearing a carotid bruit or is there another possible cause?  Could recently increased use of nasal/steroid spray for rhinitis/congestion be related?  Two weeks ago I had a pain below my left eye when I rubbed the bottom eye-lid.  Could that be related?
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Avatar_n_tn
I am a vascular sonographer, I do ultrasounds of the arteries in the neck, arms, legs and abdomen. When a pt. hears their own pulse or swooshing sounds in their ear, we do consider that an audible bruit. I have had pt.s that have that symptom and nothing is blocked in the Carotid and then sometimes there is a blockage. My advise would be to go to your doctor and have your doctor listen to your neck and see if he hears anything...if not, it's still worth a quick carotid doppler to check for plaque...carotid bruit is an indication for the test and insurance should pay, even in the abscence of more concrete neurological symptoms. Lots of people are healthy, but have high cholesterol and a lot of plaque built up in their carotid arteries. I think it's better to be safe than sorry, especially since I am a stroke survivor and wouldn't wish that on anyone!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi, I'm 39 and I'm currently recovering from a stroke caused by a carotid artery dissection. Beforehand I had similar pulsatile tinnitus. Unfortunately my CAD wasn't picked up by the doppler scan, it was diagnosed by MRA of the neck.
I also had intense pain behind my right eye, like a migraine but localised.
It could well just be tinnitus but after my experience I'd push for MRA.
Best of luck.
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Avatar_m_tn
thanks for the information, monica. i also experience carotid bruit and ill take your advice to see a doctor. thanks!
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