Can Tinnitus Be Caused by Uneventful Microsuction?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Rainer, Apr 11, 2021.

    1. Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Early December last year, I went to an ENT because of a suspected ear infection, and, as an afterthought, asked about my tinnitus having become a tad louder than it was usually.

      The ENT had a casual look into my ear and decreed that the tinnitus must be caused by ear wax which she was going to clean out. "There! Better now?"

      Nope. I didn't perceive anything remarkable, one way or another. I also don't remember the procedure being shockingly loud.

      However, a couple days later I woke up from a loud noise in both ears, the noise being entirely dissimilar to the tinnitus I already had and knew for years.

      I didn't link this deterioration to the microsuction procedure because, like I said, I didn't notice anything remarkable at the time. Certainly not a noise level that would suggest acoustic trauma.

      Then again, I just read @newfie's thread about re-developing a nasty tinnitus after shooting with hearing protection, and apparently @newfie didn't perceive the shooting noise as traumatizing either, originally.

      Additionally, I would find it conceivable that I simply didn't register the acoustic trauma that happened since I have age-related hearing loss already, so I wouldn't hear everything nasty that's going on under any circumstances.

      So I'm left to wonder whether the microsuction procedure could be at the root of the tinnitus that has been ruining most of my days for several months now, even though it didn't strike me as the obvious reason at the time?
       
    2. GBB

      GBB Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus / Microsuction / Acoustic Trauma
      The answer is yes, though data suggests low probability for the general population, it is 100% possible.
       
      • Agree Agree x 3
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Thanks.

      BTW, it just came to my mind that "low probability for the general population" will not always be a good indicator for causal relationships. To wit:
      1. There's an extremely low probability for any thirty-year old man that a meteor will hit him on the head and kill him.
      2. Also and additionally, at any time there's an extremely low probability that a meteor will be reaching earth and kill anyone in the process. Most meteors are harmless because they hit nobody even if they do reach earth.
      3. In spite of all this, if a meteor hits a thirty-year old man on his head, and this person is deceased shortly after, then it is pretty much certain that the meteor is to blame.
      I have not entirely thought this through yet, but I suspect a similar argument might be made for microsuction and tinnitus.
       
      • Funny Funny x 1
    4. GBB

      GBB Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      NYC
      Tinnitus Since:
      2016-2019 (Mild, Cured) 8/2020 (Severe)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Virus / Microsuction / Acoustic Trauma
      Ya I am not trying to qualify my answer with a caveat - it happened to me and @musicblue.
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      I noticed that below your avatar and wasn't imagining to contradict you.

      Regardless of that I find the meteor argument interesting. I'm not yet sure whether there's a hole in it.
       
    6. john2507
      Scared

      john2507 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2018, got worse in 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise?
      Ear flushing or microsuction (not sure which one as my doctor did both in the same visit) made my tinnitus a lot louder. It was pretty much the same situation too, I went in because I thought my tinnitus (that I could only hear in a quiet room back then) could be caused by ear wax, but it made no difference and after a couple of days when I woke up it was so loud I could hear it pretty much everywhere but the shower.

      9 months later and here I am, it has since gotten even worse.
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    7. Ken219
      Frustrated

      Ken219 Member

      Location:
      New York Area
      Tinnitus Since:
      Summer of 1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure?
      Empirical data from this message board indicates microsuction is dangerous to your ears. I never had it done but it sounds like a vacuuming of your ear canal?
       
    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      How horrible. I'm truly aghast that it turned out so life-changing to the worse for you.

      Did you notice anything remarkable during your appointment, was the procedure annoyingly loud?
       
    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Not always. My previous ENT from my previous hometown used the instrument like vacuum-operated tweezers to fetch pieces of cerumen and dispose them into a wastebin: Very gentle, totally silent, and I never had any problem afterwards.

      I never would have guessed that there might be a danger because ENT nincompoops use the same instrument like a hoover.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Well, I believe I have the answer now, on account of a probably hare-brained attempt to check whether my hearing has worsened since the onset of my predicament:

      Yesterday evening I executed my self-devised hearing test, trying out at which level I begin to hear different sine tones up to 10 kHz, at which time I called it a day. It felt harmless while I ran my little experiment, but today my tinnitus is worse than it has been in weeks.

      I don't think this is a coincidence, and if I'm right about this: There you have it. Seemingly unremarkable events that don't feel uncomfortable at the time absolutely can trigger or cause tinnitus. Just because it doesn't feel dangerous doesn't mean you're safe.
       
    11. RonnieThailand

      RonnieThailand Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2021
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma/Microsuction/Irrigation
      I believe this is what caused mine. I was exposed to a loud sound through an earbud 4 days prior which only made my ear ache. I went to a doctor 4 days later to get it looked at as it was still aching, and they said to check the eardrum they would have to remove earwax. I stupidly agreed to this, trusting that they know it wouldn't be harmful, had microsuction and irrigation, a normal audiogram (I realize it didn't test frequencies higher than 8,000 Hz), and woke up the next morning at 4 am to a piercing loud tinnitus in my right (the aching one) which eventually turned into crickets and other sounds over the next few days and went to both ears/head. It's very reactive and I can't watch tv or keep a fan on. This was about 3 weeks ago.

      It's become a bit milder as far as the crickets and everything lately, but I think it's simply because it's gotten cooler and I'm not using the fan, and watching silent movies as I've given up on regular tv. Turned the fan on earlier and it started ramping up, turned it off and went from a 7/10 to a 2/10 within 10 minutes. It's always there though, whether it's crickets, ringing, hissing, or computer frequency sounds.
       
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Rainer

      Rainer Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Germany
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/11/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hello Ronnie,

      The consensus in this forum seems to be that "ears take forever to heal," in other words: 3 weeks is literally nothing.

      What you report might be a blessing in disguise. I think your ears are warning you that you are harming them with noise, at least for now. If I were you, I'd give my ears rest and quiet for an extended period of time, even if they feel okay-ish already.

      I wish I had done what I'm telling you. I suspect I would not be still at square one.
       
    13. RonnieThailand

      RonnieThailand Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2021
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma/Microsuction/Irrigation
      Thank you, I appreciate that advice. This is what I thought, to protect since day 1, but then you hear others saying you need to slowly expose yourself to pink noise or other sounds to desensitize, but this doesn't seem to be rooted in any actual studies so I wish we knew for sure. I am afraid maybe I'm prolonging this by avoiding sound, but you're probably right and this is probably what I'll continue to do.
       
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