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Have blocked ear. Taking augmentin. Started getting blurred vision and ear pain. Cause and cure?

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ENT Specialist
Practicing since : 2001
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I had the respiratory flu 2 weeks ago (for 3 days). It came on suddenly and ended suddenly as well.
Since then, my right ear has been blocked up but there is no pain associated with it. I have not been dizzy, but feel off-balance. I went to see a doctor 2 days ago and she said my inner ear looked red and irritated, but not infected or so swollen that it was bulging. She prescribed augmentin, and said to take it just in case there was an infection she couldn't see. which I am now taking. Tonight, the vision in my right eye is blurry - the same side as my blocked up ear. I feel ok, with no fever or other ill effects. I am going to work every day and have a pretty good energy level. I am generally healthy and have no real medical conditions except occasional asthma from allergies.
Posted Wed, 13 Feb 2013 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Naveen Kumar 45 minutes later

Thanks for the query

The symptoms of earache could be due to the blockage of the Eustachian tube (the tube connecting nose and the ear). The eye pain is due to the congestion in the ethmoidal sinuses.

During an attack of flu or nasal allergy, or presence of anatomical nasal block, there will be development of congestion around the nasal opening of the Eustachian tube. The congestion leads to blockage of the opening of the tube and thus causing negative pressure in the middle ear and pain.

Due to Eustachian tube block there will be collection of secretions in the middle ear giving rise to pain, fullness and sensation of water logged in the ear. This is what has happened in your situation, I doubt any infection at this stage. Since you have started on Augmentin please continue and complete the course.

My advice to you is:
1. Drink plenty of warm water to keep the nose and the throat hydrated.
2. Use saline nasal spray followed by steam inhalation 2-3 times a day, which helps in reducing the nasal congestion, clearing of the mucus and reducing the headache.
3. Avoid coffee/chilled/hot beverages/alcohol/smoking if any.
4. Try taking a mucolytic (such as ambroxol or bromhexine) to reduce the viscosity of the mucus and clearing of the sinuses and the middle ear.

With the above measures your symptoms will definitely improve.

Hope I have answered your query: I will be available for the follow-up queries.

Dr. Naveen Kumar N.
ENT and Head & Neck Surgeon
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