Crackling in Ear

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Hello, this is my first crack explaining this issue in a forum and I have read plenty of forums with symptoms similar but not exactly like mine. So far I have been to 4 ENT's with no resolution to my problem and the last one telling me its in my head and not real, WOW. I have had all the hearing tests up to having an allergy test and have tried every decongestant and Nettie Pot with no fix. I have what would feel like a moderate pressure behind my right ear (fullness) that is there consistently, now if I hear a loud bang or dog barking my ear will make a crackling noise to the noise and sometimes just before it does it I hear a decompression sound and I can hear better in that ear, but its still crackling. This crackling does not hurt but is very annoying, it will stay with me until I go to bed. Wake up the next day, the sound is gone, but If a sound sets it off again, its an all day event, weird right? Something else I have noticed, if I'm like bending down changing a tire or working out on a decline bench the pressure behind my right ear gets stronger up to the ear popping then crackling to noises until I go to bed at night. Don't know if this is related but when flying, as the plane is descending I get a ridiculous pain in my forehead that is almost unbearable. The ENT'S say the drum is fine, no fluid behind the drum, maybe ETD. I can pop both ears and hold pressure with them as well, This issue has been with me now for 5 years and sometimes I can go a week or so with no issue, sometimes its every day like today. I feel if I take Ibuprofen for a headache or something, it will be a guarantee that the ear will crack the next day. I have been taking a dietetic (water pill) for some time now, its seems to help, but what the hell is causing my ear to do this? 

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  • Posted

    This does sound like ETD, Vinny.  Did any of the ENT doctors check you for that?  Even though you have had allergy tests and, I presume, they came back negative you could have non allergic rhinitis which acts just like allergies but does not show up on an allergy test.  Have you tried taking an antihistamine?  Also did any of the doctors put you on oral prednisone (steroid) or suggest steroid injection into the middle ear as a possible way to reduce inflammation that might be source of the fullness.

    Were any of the 4 ENT doctors you saw a neurotologist?  A neurotologist is an ENT that has sub specialty in inner ear diseases.  If they are not then I suggest your next try be with a neurotologist.

    By the way, are you in USA or UK?

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  • Posted

    Thanks Tammy, I'm in the US. Lot of good points. The next step was to have an MRI done, but i never did due to the cost. Not sure if any were neurologists, but thats a great point to consider. No injections or prednisone, thay all just prescribed oral steroids and anti-inflammitories.

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    • Posted

      I too have many of the symptoms you describe.  I had a viral flu in January and started having a high pitched buzz in my ears.  It changes day to day - does crackle and I have this fullness in my ear.  Family doctor confirms there is still fluid trapped and have been taking nasal sprays.   I also flew in February and experienced the pain you describe.  I have a referral into an ENT but there is an 18 month wait to see one where I live in Canada.  Been trying all kinds of things from Toynbee manoeuvre to blowing up balloons to drinking apple Vidal vinegar - steam .  Nothing has worked.   But I do believe it is ETD causing it.  That or viral flu I had is attacking my ear.  Also get bouts of vertigo.  I sure hope this isn’t permanent.

      I do have days it is quiet though and then something sets it off.

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