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What are symptoms of ear damage?

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ENT Specialist
Practicing since : 2006
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One week ago I went to a rock concert at the Forum in Los Angeles. I sat far from the stage in the "upper" section, though not all the way in the back. It was loud, though probably not as loud as some concerts (it was The Eagles).There were a couple of real screamers in the audience, esp. one guy about 10 feet away, who would yell at the top of his lungs. It was about 2.5 hour concert, with a 20-30 minute break after one hour. After the concert, my ears were numb, but by the next day they seemed to recovered from this. But they still didn't feel right. My left ear started to hurt. By Saturday, I decided to go to a walk in clinic and I was diagnosed with an ear infection in my left ear and given antibiotic drops. Also, they found a large chunk of ear wax which was removed using a water jet and some kind of tool (this procedure was unpleasant and hurt). I continue to take use the antibiotics. My problem is that my ears and hearing still do not feel right. I am very sensitive to loud noises; in fact, can't even enjoy watching TV at normal sound level. Going to a restaurant with medium noise levels is uncomfortable. There seems to be a small range of sound that won't bother me, so if I watch something on my PC, I am constantly adjusting the volume. Even talking on the phone can be uncomfortable. Also, I sense that I am hearing some high pitched sound in my ear (seems to be from the right ear). Now this is very low and slight, it is not the "whistle" sounds that I believe most people will experience once in a while and that people with tinnitus experience regularly. Again, it's slight, but I sense that it's there. I can't say that I believe my hearing is less than before, though I had thought so during a couple of conversations in the day or two after the concert. I am also very sensitive to pressure; when I close the door on my car, it bothers my ears - not just the sound but the pressure. That's the background. I would like to understand a few things: 1) Does this indicate real damage? 2) Can this resolve itself? 3) How much of it is because of the infection (and the wax removal)? 4) Can an infection cause the things I am observing? (The ringing seems to be a right ear issue though) Any thoughts on this would be helpful. Obviously, I an quite concerned. I do have an appointment with an ENT in a couple days.
Posted Wed, 19 Feb 2014 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Hariom Sharma 1 hour later
Brief Answer: Hyperacusis may be due to ear infection Detailed Answer: Hi Sir, I have gone through your query; it suggests that hyperacusis may be due to the ear infection. Answers your question 1.Yes, it indicates real damage. 2. No, it does not resolve by itself. 3. Infection may be the cause of this condition but it should be chronic infection. 4. Yes, infection may also be responsible for your ringing in the ear. For your kind information Most common cause of hyperacusis is overexposure to excessively high decibel levels. To rule out other causes you may go for 1. Pure tone audiometry. 2. Impedance. Thanks
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