Thyroid Disorders Community
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149081 tn?1242401432

Thyroid Goiters causing ear problems?

Dx- Multi Nodular Goiter 2004      
  I haven't been feeling well for a few mths. Tired, achey, frequent urination, extreme coldness,dry skin,headaches, mental confusion, extreme vertigo (now gone). I thought finally those pesky goiters have interfered with my thyroid function.Because all other lab work normal;however, I've had  tsh,Ft3,Ft4 tested 3 times in last few mths only to have my levels completely normal.( Have home copies and am amazed how normal they are.).I can't get into the endo office until January. Although I will be having another ultrasound done Tuesday to check for further growth (ordered by my pcp)

Anyhow, I've recently been having a problem with my ears and throat and i've been on an antibiotic 3 times within the last 2mths. Is it possible that the goiters have grown and are applying to much pressure therefore creating these problems? I've heard of voice troubles but ears too?

Thanks in advance for any help.
33 Responses
Avatar universal
Multinodular goiter are associated with normal levels of thyroid hormone.
You might be experiencing subacute thyroiditis which present as pain in the neck, sometimes radiating to the ear. Soreness in the neck  may extend to the angle of the mandible or toward the ear lobes on one or both sides of the neck.  However, partial deafness may be seen, due to increased mucopolysaccharides in the middle ear. Nasal obstruction and discharge for the same reason. Husky voice due to infiltration, but not paralysis of vocal cords. Enlarged tongue may also contribute to garbled voice and sleep apnea/snoring.  Have you had your ears and throat checked  by ear specialist to rule out thyroid cause, for it could be caused by other health issues.

Good Luck!
Avatar universal
Let me correct or add to my above post:
A few patients with thyroid nodules may complain of pain in the neck, jaw, or ear. If the nodule is large enough, it may cause difficulty swallowing or cause a
149081 tn?1242401432
Thank You for your comments. It's greatly appreciated.
Avatar universal
very interesting! I also have a multinodular goiter Dx in 1994. However, recently I have had problems with earaches and an odd pain when I swallow. 2 rounds of antibiotics have not helped. Also had some dizziness. Dx as inner and outer ear infection. Hmm...maybe its the goiter acting up?
Avatar universal
Very interesting thoughts on thyroid goiters causing ear problems.  I have had normal thyroid functions for years and after an ultrasound was diagnosed with multi-nodular goiter.  I had to beg for it after I developed difficulty swallowing.  For the past two years I have "pain" and a "fullness" feeling in the right ear with the pain travelling down the side of my neck. I'm now having vertigo problems and nothing seems to be working.   Anyone have any success with treatment of thyroid goiters helping these symptoms?
Avatar universal
Oh My Gosh!!!  I am so happy to have found this forum. I have been having the same signs and symptoms for the past year. Just over a year ago, I had 2/3 of my Thyroid removed ( left node and ithsmus). I still have the ride side of the thyroid. I had a nodule the size of a walnut that was pressing on my esophagus and trachea. Today, my Thyroid levels show normal. Since the surgery, I have had increasing hearing loss. in the left ear only. The tympanic membrane has no movement. I often have a feeling of fullness and pressure. This past summer I suffered from severe vertigo which has since disappeared. I also get this small stabbing pain and tickle in this ear as well. All these symptoms are the same as other posters, however, what caught my attention is the symptom of neck pain. I have neck pain and stiffness in my neck that often causes very bad headaches. Range of motion in the neck is good when rotating to the right, poor and painfull when turning to the left. My specialist has ordered an MRI and suspects acoustic neuroma. A benign tumor on the auditory nerve and cochlea. Is this perhaps a problem with my thyroid and nothig to do with my ear?
I wish there were more posts on this subject.
Thanks for the awareness..
Avatar universal
I have ear and jaw pain on the left side- I definitely do not think this is TMJ- The pain from ear and jaw started the same time I began taking armour thyroid. I have seen several doctors, including ENT, all seem confused, and convince themselves it is TMJ which again I feel certain it is not. I think this is directly related to armour thyroid. I have a growth or something on my left jaw that I noticed after the pain started. CT scan has left ENT even more confused- he thinks this is not related to my TMJ. anyone else experiencing this weirdness
Avatar universal
Like everyone else here, I too have a thyroid nodule. Literally the first day it was diagnosed, I started to get ear problems. Intense itchiness--every day. I've been getting so many ear infections and have seen quite a few doctors (no ENT yet, that's tomorrow). They have all been suggesting allergies. I've never had any allergy issues or any other health problems for that matter, but I wonder if my thyroid could have made me more susceptible to allergens? I can't shake the feeling that my  nodule has something to do with this  problem since they appeared out of nowhere at the same time. I believe the nodule is the reason for my recent voice loss, pain and swallowing issues, so I don't have a hard time connecting it to my ear issues as well. Hopefully the ENT will take a comprehensive look at both problems and address this possible relationship. If it happens to be related (don't know how they'll figure that out), I'm just going to get the surgery. Ear infections are just plain hell.
Avatar universal
Wow..I can't believe I found this web site.  I am sitting at my desk with 2 prescriptions for an ear infection...drops and antibiotics.  When I picked up my prescrip. last night at pharmacy the gal says ...I see  you have used these ear drops alot...so I won't tell you how to put them in.  I started thinking ya ..I have.  
I was diagnosed with a mutli nodule goiter a few years ago...blood tests are within normal limits...have had the largest lump biopsied 3 times and no worries.  I have had though really itchy ears constantly,  really bad reactions to hair dye...so I stopped dying my hair 6 months ago....and yes I am very grey for a 48 year old..  I clear my throat constantly and always feel stuffed up.  I am going to see an ENT in 2 weeks ...will seee what his opinion is.  I'll check back here again.
Avatar universal
I've got the dreaded ear pain too!  It started last summer (July) and I went to urgent care and was placed on antibiotics and nasal spray. After 10 days it still hurt like crazy so I went back in and was told it must be my sinus and to take sinus decongestant and antihistamines.  That didn't help.  
I lived with the darn pain and in October it got worse and I began experiencing horrible ringing in my ears. I got in to see my family dr at that time and he put me on anitbiotics for 21 days, and 10 days of prednisone as well as cortisone nasal spray.  Seemed to help a bit, but the meds made me sick as heck.  Then of course the pain came back

In January I was about to go crazy from the ringing (still hurt too).  I saw an ENT who found nothing wrong and had a hearing test which was fine.

I went back to the family dr about 6 weeks ago and again was placed on anitbiotics.  It just doesn't help.

I have Graves disease and had RAI in July 2005.  I've gotten fat as a cow and feel like crap. I had a good sized goiter when I was diagnosed with Graves.  I also have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and I've got a herniated disc in my neck which is putting pressure on some nerves (may be having surgery soon on that sucker)

The dr's and I felt that the ear pain and ringing was maybe from the herniated cervical disc.  But now I read your comments and am wondering if it is my thyroid.  I am just about ready to give up on all this crap, I am soooooo tired of dealing with it, pain and doctors, and insurance companies etc.

I did buy a mouth guard, like athletes use.  It was on one dollar at Walmart and I heated it and formed it to my mouth.  I wear it when I sleep and it seems to help.  It keeps my jaw in place and has alleviated some of the ear pain.

If anyone makes a break through diagnosis it would be great!  I know we are all sick and tired of suffering with this kind of crap. It sure makes my quality of life suck.  I wish and pray for some answers and some relief, for myself and all of you guys too.
263988 tn?1281957896
"I have had though really itchy ears constantly,  really bad reactions to hair dye...so I stopped dying my hair 6 months ago....and yes I am very grey for a 48 year old..  I clear my throat constantly and always feel stuffed up.  I am going to see an ENT in 2 weeks ...will seee what his opinion is.  I'll check back here again."

I started having itchy ears when I was a teenager.

Bad reactions to medications, hair dyes, and perms.

Started turning grey when I was 30 years old.

Currently, I am on LT4 and LT3. The LT3 has been difficult to find the right dose. I'm always getting heart palps if I'm on the full dose for 7 days or longer. Trying to stagger the doses and alternate doses. I hope I don't have to give this med up. I can actually get up and do stuff.

I had Thyroiditis this last winter. Been hypoT for 30 plus years. Diagnosed in 2003 but under medicated.

Have pressure and numbness around ears/face/head especially right side. No nodules according to last scan in 2008.

Seeing a better doctor now whose trying to get my FreeT3 level up. It's in the dumps.
Avatar universal
I'm so excited to read this.  I was just diagnosed with a nodule and enlarged thyroid.  I have have had coughing and ear problems for two years.  No one has been able to figure out why.  I think when they remove my thyroid, the ear problems with go away along with the cough.  It has been mostly my right ear and the scans show the thyroid pushing my trahcea way over to the right.  I think it is causing all the itching and popping sounds from my right ear.  They said that the coughing was allergies which I have never had.  The surgeon said that the trachea is being irritated by the thyroind pushing on it, thus the cough.  I'll be glad to get it out.
1634979 tn?1300131987
I have multiple thyroid nodules and have the vertigo and pain and all that everyone is talking about along with tinnitus. I was recently diagnosed with Meniere's Disease. These symptoms are all symptomatic of that. I do believe, however, that the thyroid escalates the symptoms during an atttack of thyroiditis. I am having a biopsy done and am actually hoping they remove the thyroid so those attacks will stop.
Avatar universal
Iam so pleased i found this site , i have sufferd a number of years from dizzyness and being light headed almost every single day Just before christmas 2011 i found a small lump in my neck , doctors sent me for scans and blood tests to check for thyroid problems but the blood test showed normal function , but the scan said otherwise now im waiting to see a spcialist to find out whats going on ,i have also been diagnosed with minears desease ,and i have had these ear infections and virtigo for 7 years but i need someone to put my mind at rest as i think i have cancer ....please if someone has simular problems i would love to hear about it ...
Avatar universal
Reading through these messages I am relieved to know that I am not the only one with the itchy ear problem.  I have 8 nodules, 4 on each side.  I have talked to the doctor over and over about the ears itching and he keeps saying it's allergies and has me take antihistamines.  They don't work, ears still itch.  The lowering of the voice, itchy ears, pain/muscle spasms in front of throat, none of these things seem to hit home with my Endo.  Last TSH was .044, she didn't test T3 or T4, says that as long as the TSH is in the "normal range" it isn't necessary.  Anyone know of a good Endo in McHenry County IL?  I need someone that actually listens and doesn't go by a book that doesn't take the human factor into account.
Avatar universal
I wish someone would post their follow ups!! I'm hypothyroid (autoimmune) and had a goiter. Struggled with the initial diagnosis and now I have had a mystery ear problem with my left ear for about 6 years. Help!
Avatar universal
I wish they would, too.  Otherwise, it's all anxiety-producing speculation.  I think part of the problem is that there aren't email notifications when posts are made within the section(s), coupled with, I'm guessing, a reluctance to endlessly chase one's symptoms to no avail.

It is tiresome and somewhat frightening to have muliple nodules on the thyroid, and not have them factored in with overall health and other symptoms.
Avatar universal
I have not idea what is going on... I am so tired and now have pain in neck and goiter since i was in my 30's.  It hurts when i cough up the sides of my face to my temples.  I am getting so scared with all this.  No one will listen... the ringing in my ears is driving me crazy and have been told i have sinus infection and antibotics don't work.  Can't sleep, don't want to eat and getting depressed over this.  It has made not be able to work or function.  I don't know what to do... I have had biopsys for nodules and nothing and people look at me like i am a freak cuz of the bulging.  I am so embarassed and now have no insurance to have the goiter removed.  I have no family to support me and no good doctors here were i live for thryroid issues.  I don't know what to do on this matter.  My skin is dry and all my TsH comes back normal and now i am suffering again from panic attacks and can not function.  Someone please help me with all this and tell me what to do and how to handle this... I feel dizzy and have this cough and pain in right side of neck when i cough and pain in the back of my neck... I also have this heavy feeling in my ears and feel so confused most of the time and scares me that i might be having a stroke... have been checked and all is good on that but still no one will listen
649848 tn?1534637300
This is a very old thread and the original posters are no longer active on the forum, so it's unlikely you will see any updates.

maryg705 - as stated, this is a very old thread.  You'd get much better response to your question if you start a new thread of your own, rather than attaching to such an old thread.  You can start a new thread by clicking on the orange "Post a Question" button at the top of the page, type your question, then click the green "Post a Comment" button.

If you have, or think you have, a thyroid condition, be sure to include any lab results you might have, along with the reference ranges as printed on your lab report, since ranges vary lab to lab and have to come from your own report.
Avatar universal

I know what you are going through.  The anxiety, the mind games, the constant wondering and restlessness.  

I can tell you that there is a way to get through it, but you have to learn to take your focus off of the symptoms somehow.  It's a terrible cycle.  Your pain causes you to freak out, and then the anxiety makes it worse.

I can help, but you need to trust that others have and are going thru this same thing but learning how to cope while waiting for the right procedures to be found or done.  

Write back, and we'll see if we can connect via email somehow.
649848 tn?1534637300
As stated above, this is a very old thread and maryg has not been active on the forum since her post above, so it's unlikely you will get a response.
Avatar universal
Well it seems we that have the diagonsis of goiters also end up with earaches..I have had this earache for past a year now and your right the doctors are treating it like nothing and a puzzle. The pain is sharp at times and daily a dull throbbing. I have a multi-nodule goiter on the right side and the earache is also on the right side. Jaw feels always tender to chew. They have tried antibiotics, nasal sprays... on pain pills but I refuse to get hooked just so there is no pain. They do see a cloudy area behind the eardrum that is not normal... I wonder how long it has been there and no one noticed... till now. I am waiting to see an ENT doctor now after so long of having the pain. My Thyroid levels are normal, but this is not normal.
Avatar universal
Has your ionized calcium been measured? I have hypercelcemia, and I am thinking whether my ear pain, tinnitus and vertigo maight result from possible calcium crystals in  my inner ear (?), why not being also in the middle ear?

My thyroid nodules have shrunk to below 1 cm, and the thyroid gland itself has shrunk to very small. Thus the nodules may not be a cause for ear pain.

I have postnasal drip and a swollen lymph node behind my sternocleidomastoid muscle for years. The lymph node could also cause my jaw-ear-temple pain. The pain was intermittent and lasted for four months in spring 2013. Since then I have had only once hints of it.
Avatar universal
I have had the same issues!! Enlarged thyroid goiters acute thyroiditis had afew biopsies but they say everything is fine I don't get how everything is fine when I hurt so much throat pain ear pain headaches I swear the list just goes on and on!! Tired of feeling tired!!! Just wish I would feel normal again before I was diagnosed with hypothyroid
I feel all you ladies out there and the few men lol with the same probs it's just pure hell for us all!! Keep your heads up
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