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Concerned about Ear injury - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 21-Feb-2012
User rating for this question
Very Good Posted in: Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
Answered : 586 Questions
User :   I was cleaning my ear after my shower and i had water stuck in my left ear, so i tried to go deeper with the q-tip to get it out but i think i went too deep because i suddenly lost most of my hearing in my left ear and when i pulled the q-tip out it had a little blood on it. I'm kind of freaking out.
Doctor :   Hi
User :   Hello sir
User :   i could really use your help
Doctor :   Do you have pain?
User :   none at all, thats the weird part
Doctor :   Are you bleeding?
User :   a little
Doctor :   Ok
User :   not bad at all though
Doctor :   Do you feel that your hearing has reduced considerably when compared to the other ear?
User :   yes
User :   i can still hear a little out of it though
User :   What should I do?
User :   I'm at college 3 states away from home and I dont know if i need to go to the ER or not.
Doctor :   Ok
Doctor :   let me explain to you.
Doctor :   A foreign body application in the ear can induce traumatic injury to the tympanic membrane.
Doctor :   Most often traumatic injuries heal, if your hearing isn't affected completely with time.
Doctor :   However since I am unable to physically examine you,
Doctor :   I cannot predict the severity of the injury.
User :   I understand
Doctor :   Hence my suggestion to you is to see an ENT surgeon who can examine you and predict the severity of injury.
Doctor :   In the mean time, keep your ears dry and clean.
User :   With the information that I have given to you, do you think I need to go to the ER immediately? or wait on it?
Doctor :   you can clean the blood superfiically with cotton.
Doctor :   Do not try to probe deep.
Doctor :   Do not apply water or eardrops.
Doctor :   Consult an ENT surgeon to assess the injury.
Doctor :   Based on your description, I feel that the injury isn't a serious one and can be treated conservatively.
User :   I understand, but do i need to go to the ER immediately or should i wait on it?
User :   oh ok
Doctor :   Earlier the better.
Doctor :   You may need early antibiotics to prevent infections.
User :   so since i dont feel any pain can you predict that with sufficient care there wont be any long term damage?
User :   i just want you to tell me im not going to go deaf,
Doctor :   Since antibiotics are prescription medications, my suggestion to see a doctor as early as possible.
Doctor :   There are very few reports of deafness developing due to such injuries.
Doctor :   and most often such deafness are correctable
Doctor :   by surgical means.
Doctor :   hence you need not worry.
User :   Ok thank God.
User :   I feel so much better now.
Doctor :   I do not foresee any major complications
Doctor :   and not definitely absolute deafness.
Doctor :   Consult a doctor and obtain the necessary medications.
User :   Thank you so much Doctor. I really appreciate your help.
Doctor :   Have you followed what I have suggested?
User :   well its 2:00am so i think the only thing open would be the ER.
Doctor :   It is necessary that you keep your ears dry and clean till you see the doctor, so do not apply any ear drops till you see the doctor.
Doctor :   You should be fine in a few days.
Doctor :   Do you have any other query?
User :   would it still be neccessary to consult a doctor if i feel like i'm healing up fine and my hearing returns?
Doctor :   As mentioned earlier,
Doctor :   Most often keeping the ear clean, avoiding further probing and preventing infections lead to recovery of the ear drum.
Doctor :   So I do expect it to improve if you keep them clean and dry.
User :   Ok i will do that
Doctor :   However I do suggest you to consult a doctor who after visual examination can diagnose the severity as well as prescribe you the antibiotics if necessary.
Doctor :   have you followed?
User :   are you asking if i understand?
Doctor :   Yes,
Doctor :   Have you followed with my suggestions?
User :   yes i follow you
Doctor :   Do you have any other query?
User :   not that i can think of at this time
Doctor :   Thanks for consulting me.
Doctor :   Bye for now.
User :   thank you so much doctor
User :   take care
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