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Occasional ear pain, squelching and cracks when I lean forward. Going to travel by air. Will I have problems ?

Hello, about a month ago, I had a constant ear/headache (right side) for about a week which ibuprofen couldn't touch. So I did some hot compresses and after the 3rd one, I had a huge roaring in my ear. Next day, no earache, hooray! But I do still get the earache occasionally (and always when driving up a 1,000' grade) but am mostly troubled by noises - squelching and cracks especially if I lean my head forward - and actually in both ears. Of course, my insurance ended right before this problem started so I'm hoping it'll clear up on its own or with something i can at least try over the counter. I'm not troubled too much by the noises but I have an 11-hour flight coming up mid-May and I'm afraid it may end up being painful. Sorry bout writing a book here but... and thank you so much for listening to me.
Asked On : Wed, 10 Apr 2013
Answers:  2 Views:  130
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ENT Specialist 's  Response

Thanks for writing to H.C.M. for your query.

I have gone through your query regarding pain in ear followed by unwanted crackling sound in ear. You have this for last one month. Your pain in the ear remain for a week than gradually pain subsided and it has been felt off and on, while noices like squelching and cracks are felt specially on lean your head forward.

Considering your symptoms it appears as your eustachian tube is not working properly and it is partialy obstructed may be due to pharyngeal infection and oedema. This obstructed tube had given rise to severe pain in ears and tinnitus.

You are advice for-

(a) Antibiotic- preferably broad spectrum.

(b) Anti inflammatory.

(c) Decongestant and mucolytic.

(d) Steam inhalation.

I hope this will help you and you are advice that you should cure yourself before air travel otherwise this will disturbe you in your journey.

Answered: Wed, 10 Apr 2013
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ENT Specialist Dr. Abhishek Sharma's  Response
you seem to get this pain while flying.
this occurs because of the change of pressure.
middle part of Ear and throat (back of nose) are connected by a tube called eustachian tube it is because of non opening of that tube that the pressure is not distributed and in middle ear negative pressure generates and it pains.
you can take---
A Decongestant like Phenylephrine /pseudoephedrine with non sedating anti histaminic like loratidine twice daily .for 5 days and starting 1 day prior to next flight
Tab. Acetyl cysteine 600mg once daily for 5 days and starting 1 day prior to next flight
and u can put Xylometazoline nose drops two drops both nostril half an hour before take off and half an hour before landing.
and do keep chewing while take off and landing.
Answered: Thu, 11 Apr 2013
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