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Clogged ears? Loss of high frequencies.

Discussion in 'off topic' started by chartz, Nov 30, 2019.

  1. chartz

    chartz pfm Member


    Any ENT specialists here?

    I have had an annoying problem that has been poisoning my hi-fi and music lover life for some time now.
    My ears keep clogging whatever I do and wherever I am. It is a near-permanent condition.
    Suddenly my hi-fi sounds muffled, just plain awful really. Think Roberts AM radio set.
    I have to pinch my nose and blow to release the internal pressure and recover my normal perception of treble.
    I’ve seen several ENT doctors but they find nothing wrong. Useless.
    They don’t even understand my problem at all, because I can hear just fine for them. They don’t have a clue what that hi-fi problem is about, not interested.
    Their 8 kHz top test is just insufficient. Perhaps good enough for my in-laws, but my upper frequency hearing is fine I’m sure.
    When pressure is released I can enjoy the music.
    Of course my ears are clean, that the ENT docs told me, no excessive wax.

    I don’t suffer from permanent tinnitus.
  2. Ragaman

    Ragaman Mentalist

    Having spent the last 12 months under my local ENT specialist (ooh err missus!!) I would say you may be suffering from ETD (Eustachian tube dysfunction). Normally associated with having a cold or flu but can happen for other reasons. The air pressure & fluid inside the middle ear is controlled by this working fully. If there is some swelling or infection it can stop open or shut causing the symptoms you have.

    Just thank your lucky stars you are not suffering with extreme tinnitus alongside this.
    & even though my hearing was measured as nigh on normal for my age I have both after a perforated eardrum & infection, it's a world of misery.

    The usual route is to try nasal sprays or drops as the Eustachian tube travels to the back of the nose though it depends if you can use them with any medication you may be taking.

    You could mention this route to your doctor as it won't harm anything to try it.
  3. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    Cheers for that.
    Looking it up here and there I sort of came to the same conclusions prior to consulting.
    I've just had 7 days of nasal sulfur treatment along with Prednisone (ampoules) with no success.
  4. Ragaman

    Ragaman Mentalist

    I have found one thing over the time I have spent with ENT. They do seem a little clueless at times to symptoms described to them.

    I had my hearing tested 4 times in a 3 month period including the pressure test where the eardrum is tested for movement (my eardrum is shot BTW) & one ENT guy said my hearing was better in my right (the so called good ear) while another suggested the opposite.

    I have probably seen around 4 ENT specialists & an audiologist & am no further to sorting my problem as I was a year ago.

    The nasal drops & such are not a proven method of dealing with ETD, not everyone benefits from it. I couldn't try it due to my medication.

    How long have you been suffering with this as ETD can rectify itself though it can take a few years & obviously you have no damage to the delicate hairs & nerves otherwise your hearing would be permanently muffled.
    Andrew C! likes this.
  5. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    Very frustrating innit?
  6. cjarchez

    cjarchez pfm Member

    Check your blood pressure as well.
    I was getting sporadic ETD and very high BP was the cause, now under control with meds and doing my best to adjust my diet and lifestyle to ween myself off those asap.
    Ragaman likes this.
  7. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    Makes sense. No such problem. I just checked.
  8. Bart

    Bart pfm Member

    My hearing is pretty atrocious according to on-line frequency tests yet I still get huge pleasure from listening to music and seem to hear a lot detail and have a very ‘full’ experience- makes me wonder what someone with excellent hearing is getting. A better or worse experience?
    Maybe the better your hearing the more you are driven to buy better and better ( i.e. more and more expensive ) kit!
  9. gintonic

    gintonic 50 shades of grey pussy cats

    mine is shot, with permanent tinnitus, but nothing detracts from the music I want to listen to.
  10. slavedata

    slavedata pfm Member

    is it possibly blocked Sinuses? I found steaming over a bowl of hot water helpful.
  11. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    I'll try that, cheers! The effect will probably be temporary, won't it?
  12. cooky1257

    cooky1257 pfm Member

    I suffer with ETD and I'm booked in for a balloon dilation op-assuming I live that long...Basically they inflate a long thin balloon that crushes the ET walls, the subsequent scarring then effectively opens up the tube permanently so it functions correctly.
  13. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    Do keep us informed once done. I am hugely interested in that procedure. No possible side effects?
  14. cooky1257

    cooky1257 pfm Member

    Will do. ENT is really under pressure with looooong waiting times so lord knows when it’s going to happen.btw it’s all done under a general aneasthetic.
  15. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    Good luck then. I'll wait till you get out of theatre. Then I'll try to see another ENT and talk about your experience.
  16. MikeMA

    MikeMA pfm Member

    Isn't this what grommets were supposd to help do?
  17. chartz

    chartz pfm Member

    My ETD has worsened a lot lately.
    I now have a permanently clogged right ear and a muffled left ear, with an annoying pulsating tinnitus at night.
    Nothing works.
    I have an appointment at the ENT but it's in April at best. The better specialist has nothing until July. Sick.

    This drives me mad, and I am now completely rejecting my hi-fi and any form of music bores me. I have two concerts coming up, couldn't care less.
    I think I won't be able to avoid a profound depression if this goes on like this. The worst is that I need my voice to work and I hate that closed-in feeling.

    And I don't want grommets, I want my tubes to breathe again!
  18. cooky1257

    cooky1257 pfm Member

    Ok, job done this morning as a day case, bit woozy after general anaesthetic, sore throat and nose but the change is just brilliant, clear clean and consistent improvement,god bless the NHS. Consultant advised it may work 100%, maybe just a short time or not at all. I'm hoping today's transformation is permanent.
    Johnjo, calorgas and Weekender like this.
  19. Marchbanks

    Marchbanks Hat and Beard member

    That’s brilliant news! I’m getting fed up with having to do the aeroplane pressure trick every hour or two to get full HF back - perhaps it’s time I went to see the doctor.
  20. cooky1257

    cooky1257 pfm Member

    Problem was just in my left ear. Despite it taking 18 months to get to today's op I recommend you do it Leigh.
    Hoopsontoast likes this.

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