Barotrauma → Patulous Eustachian Tube (Ears Frequently Popping, Autophony)

Discussion in 'Support' started by Misticvega, Jun 7, 2022.

    1. Misticvega

      Misticvega Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Probably noise exposure?
      I recently experienced ear barotrauma and believe I may have inadvertently caused Patulous Eustachian Tube.

      Two weeks ago, I made the unbeknownst mistake of getting on an airplane while having a sinus infection. My left sinus had been clogged for a few days and shortly after takeoff, I was unable to properly adjust the pressure in my left ear. After landing, my left ear still felt full. The next morning, I realized all of the mucus in my left nasal cavity had made its way through my Eustachian Tube and now into my middle ear. My tinnitus was about 4 times louder and my hearing was about 4 times worse in my left ear. Fortunately, with the aid of nasal decongestants, excessive gum chewing, and forcing my ears to pop (closing my right ear, nostrils, and forcing air through the Eustachian Tube into my left middle ear), I began to drain the mucus. After about 3-4 days, I was back to normal.

      A few days after recovering from ear barotrauma, I traveled home. On the plane, I struggled once again to relieve pressure in my left ear. I was able to combat this my forcing air into my left middle ear. Once home, everything seemed fine until after a few days I started experiencing Patulous Eustachian Tube symptoms. Since my onset of tinnitus 4 years ago, my ears have always frequently popped, but now my left ear is on a different level. The popping in my left ear is extremely frequent (every time I swallow), and I am experiencing the more annoying symptom, autophony. Throughout the day, the abnormal excessive popping is consistent, however, the autophony ranges from a low to high perception of my own breathing and speaking.

      It's early to tell and I know I should probably give this some time, but ever since getting chronic tinnitus, I am always fearful of newer symptoms becoming chronic as well. I've habituated quite well to my tinnitus, almost to the point where I've accepted, I will suffer for the rest of my life. I have also managed to cope well with my minor hyperacusis. I wear filtered ear plugs when I am in a louder environment.

      I wonder if by forcing air into my middle ear, I've caused Patulous Eustachian Tube? Has anyone else had a similar experience? Does Patulous Eustachian Tube improve over time, or maybe even go away? Patulous Eustachian Tube would be yet another demoralizing ear condition.
      • Hug Hug x 1
    2. OptimistWarrior

      OptimistWarrior Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Wim Hof
    3. Jammer

      Jammer Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      Probably not here on the forum; this was their last post.

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