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Ear pain with hearing loss and ear infection. Is surgery the last option?

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ENT Specialist
Practicing since : 1984
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I am 46 years old. I had painful ears last week and severe pain, hearing loss 100% and ringing in the ear. No high fever though. Consulted an ENT. Diagnosed with infection in left ear and fungal in right ear. Treated with Augmentin and some steroids. I am having cold for the past few weeks, though not serious but persisting. After a week, still some hearing loss and ringing is present. Doctor examined and said no more infection or fungal in ear canal. Did an audiometry test. Hearing loss of 25% in right and 35% in left. Diagnosed with fluid in middle ear. Doctor says fluid is thickened as there is no ear drum movement detected in audiometry test. Doctor has put me on further course of steroid 10mg and mucus thinning tablet 600 mg. Doctor says will review after 1 week. If not resolved need to drain out the fluid thru surgery. As of now my hearing has improved from 100% loss to 35% loss and I feel mildly sick and dull. Is there anything serious.
Posted Wed, 6 Mar 2013 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. A.K. Srivastava 1 hour later

Welcome to H.C.M. for consulting.

I read your query regarding hearing loss and treatment you got with advice of your doctor regarding minor surgery.

Here, first of all I would like to tell you how and why your problem arise, then you will be able to understand the treatment part. As you said you are having cold for past few weeks, this cold when remain untreated had involved your sinuses. Once the sinusitis developed, the cold becomes chronic and sinuses starts discharging infected fluid which goes back in throat (what you call as post nasal drip). Due to this dri,p throat feels soreness, and infection from throat reaches to ear via Eustachian tube (tubular connection between ear and throat ). In this way you develop fluid in the middle ear.

As the fluid accumulates in middle ear one feels blockade in ear, with echo of spoken words, ringing sound and hearing diminishes depending on amount of fluid.

For treatment, one should take antibiotic, anti inflammatory, antihistaminics and decongestant along with steam inhalation. Most of the time improvement occurs and this takes about 10 to 15 days. Unfortunately, if middle ear fluid becomes thick and does not respond to above conservative treatment, then it is named as GLUE EAR. This glue ear is treated by a minor operation called as MYRINGOTOMY operation.

Hope your query is clarified, but still if any doubt is there, you can let me know.

With Regards.
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