Please Help With Finding the Cause of My Tiinnitus

Discussion in 'Support' started by tencount, May 28, 2013.

tinnitus forum
    1. tencount
      Surrender

      tencount Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      hello forum,

      i guess i am the next one to join this exclusive club of tinnitus sufferers. ive had it for about almost two weeks now, and have done what most others before me did when they first got it. that is searching the internet and getting myself depressed to limits i have not realized before. anyways, since im still going through the first phase of this illness which is a combination of depression, confusion, and hope (atleast from my current reactions so far). i was wondering if you guys can give me suggestions on the possible cause of my T. luckily, i was able to remember the days prior
      to my T and hope maybe you guys whove had similar situations can help.

      a little background on myself, i am 25 years old and hardly ever go out of the house aside
      from school. i had congestive heartfailure due to a blood clot in my lungs in 2011 in which
      my heart became enlarged with an ejection fraction of 8%. miraculously i survived that ordeal
      and made a complete recovery. as a result of that i was given blood thinners and 2
      blood pressure medications (metropolol and cozaar) to take. i later found out these medicines
      aside from the blood thinners were very ototoxic (more on that later). i usually try to eat healthy most of the time but when im really stressed out by school i start eating junk (high sodium foods) as a means of comfort. also when it comes to test times i tend to drink large amounts of coffee in order to just stay focused.


      now that theres a little bit of background info, this is how my T started. it was the day
      after my physics exam which i thought i blew (it turned out i scored higher than the average).
      i felt so bummed out that day that i decided to do something i normally didnt during the
      quarter. i decided to go out that night and watch a movie with some friends. upon reaching
      the movies they apparently smuggled liquor inside the theatre. in my head i knew i wasnt
      supposed to drink alcohol while under the blood pressure medicines. so with enough suggestion
      my friends convinced me to atleast drink a beer and a shot. ive drank alcohol once in awhile even while under blood pressure medicines in the past and in much larger quantities so i felt this wouldnt be harmful. when the movie ended i felt fine and drove home (sober). my hearing was perfectly fine no ringing everything was normal so at that moment i felt it was good to relieve some stress. when i got home, since i had some hw i put off to watch the movie, instead of sleeping i decided to just finish it and sleep in the morning. i got a stomachache at at around 3am i guess from the combination of butter popcorn mcdonalds and beer and threw up practically everything i ate that day. i felt better after and continued doing homework, once again everything is fine.


      its around 6am now and i finish my homework, and instead of sleeping decide to tell my dad
      that ill pick up my mom from work. since i was up already why not just let him get
      some sleep. so upon going out my driveway and reaching the freeway the back of my neck starts
      to feel stiff. but it was a neck pain i was familiar with so i didnt think it to be a big deal.
      so when i got home i decided to take some aspirin. we had run out of the regular strength ones
      and only had the extra strength left. i took the suggested dosage for adults (2 tablets). i decided
      also to take a magnesium supplement along with the tylenol since i usually drank magnesium before i went to sleep. 30 minutes after i consumed the tylenols i got this very very loud ringing in both my ears. ive felt tinnitus before in the past usually after colds or listening to something too loud but its never lasted any longer than a minute. i immediately got into a panic as the noise did not subside in 5 minutes. fast-forward to now, the ringing is still as intense as it was in the beginning except only in the right ear.


      at almost 2 weeks in i feel like the sound is a consistent 5800hz tone almost like a broken smoke
      detector sound. it fluctuates from moderate to severely loud(its very loud right now). there was
      however one day when it was very low, however that changed the moment i went to school. also apparently on online hearing tests i am unable to hear past 5800hz. and my hearing has been distorted (especially during the first week). i dont know if that is the product of the T
      or many years of listening to loud music in the car. i know my hearing was already bad in the past since as years went by i had to raise the volume higher in the car just to get into that head banging mode while driving.

      my problem right now is that there were many variables that day that may have caused the t. was it the movies? was it the alcohol + blood pressure meds? was it the otoxicity of the blood pressure meds + aspirin combo? in the first week i felt like it was the movies but after doing research online it seems very unlikely since the theatre speakers are located at the ceiling. and theres always breaks in the movies where the decibels are in non damaging range. im leaning towards the theory of the blood pressure meds + aspirin combo since they are highly ototoxic and ive read stories of people losing their t after stopping those meds (sometimes this process takes months/weeks).

      this t is nerve racking and only through this experience can one understand the horror. ive been
      through hell with chf and pulmonary embolism being unable to breathe while laying down. but after experiencing 1.5 weeks of T. this is definitely way worse! because at least when i was suffering from chf my perceptions were unaffected. anyways sorry for the long first post, what do you guys think about the potential cause of my t?
       
    2. Karen
      Talkative

      Karen Manager Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Ambassador

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      First time: Noise 2nd Time: Ototoxic drug
      Hi, tencount,

      Thanks for writing your detailed story for us. You've obviously been through a lot recently, and to have tinnitus on top of it is must be very difficult to deal with.

      It is very hard to say what combination of factors might have caused your tinnitus. Do you have any hearing loss that you're aware of? If so, your ears might have already been a little bit sensitive, and then with all the other factors thrown in, that could have been enough to set it off. It seems more likely that it could have been from the combination of blood pressure meds plus aspirin (or did you say it was Tylenol? They are very different medications). Plus, your body must have gone through a lot of stress recently, so it could have been all of those things combined.

      Whatever caused it, however, the most important thing is not to panic. Things could get better with time, as you have probably read elsewhere on this forum. In the meantime, be sure to wear ear protection the next time you're exposed to any loud noise, such as that in a movie theater, when you go out. Also, you can try using sound therapy for sleep. It helps to be a in a sound-enriched environment when you have tinnitus; in other words, you'll notice the tinnitus less if there is sound around to distract your mind. Please do stay calm; your tinnitus will improve with time.

      I'm sure others on this forum will want to comment and add some suggestions. Take care!
       
    3. tencount
      Surrender

      tencount Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      hi karen,

      thanks for responding. i just got back from the ent, and boy was the sound proof room hellish. the T was extremely loud. they said i lost some hearing on both ears and just wrote me up a prescription for zyrtek. not sure if thats going to help me. oh and it was tylenol not aspirin i wasnt sure if they were the same thing or not. im already up to speed with the ear protection, i now have to preserve what little hearing i have left. i am using sound maskers although my T does a good job of being louder than those distractions. also im thinking since this case of T is relatively new, i should take up a loan and get hyperbaric oxygen therapy. have you heard of anything positive about that procedure in regards to T?
       
    4. Karen
      Talkative

      Karen Manager Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Ambassador

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      First time: Noise 2nd Time: Ototoxic drug
    5. tencount
      Surrender

      tencount Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      i found a place that does it near my area for 200$ per 1 hour session. all i need is a recommendation from a physician to go into the chamber. ill try to get that next week.

      also a quick little update on my t, i've been up since monday not being able to sleep and somehow still going to school and being somewhat productive. its horrible having to sit all night just listening to this thing until today. i don't know if its a break through or not but since Tuesday i stopped taking the metoprolol (the one likely to cause the otoxicity) and early this morning a bunch of the supplements i ordered to calm this T arrived (magnesium, fish oil, vitamin e, c, b12, hawthorne, and folic acid). i took the supplements and even though T was loud as usual especially in the classroom when i got home. I noticed the T had dropped in volume by 90%, its still there but i can only hear it now only if i cover my ears or specifically look for it.

      of course im not out of the woods yet, apparently since this change everything i hear echos with the T's trademark sound. like if someone said a word to me id then hear eeeeee then silence. its a little awkward hearing things like that but id rather have it this way than the constant super loud t in the beginning. have you ever had this kind of reaction before? hopefully this is a sign of things getting better *crosses fingers
       
    6. tencount
      Surrender

      tencount Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      another update,

      since going off the bp meds and replacing them with vitamins and herbal supplements the T's sound has decreased greatly to the point i dont notice it in a quiet room (only when i cover my ears do i hear it). i still have the echos but its getting better. and i can now hear up to 6800hz up from 5800hz (was at the audiologist today). i think it really was the bp meds that caused this (metoprolol and cozaar). hopefully i make a complete recovery, but im just thankful that the T went down because the first week of it was horrific. anyways, just updating in case anyone might find my story and self treatment useful for their own situation.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    7. Karen
      Talkative

      Karen Manager Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Ambassador

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      First time: Noise 2nd Time: Ototoxic drug
      Hi, tencount,

      Thanks for the update! I'm glad to hear that you are doing better, tinnitus-wise, and I hope it continues to improve.

      I can relate to your experience with the blood pressure drugs, because the same thing happened to me. I already had mild tinnitus in my right ear for many years, and three years ago, I was put on blood pressure medicine. Within about 2 weeks after that, my tinnitus went crazy! It became very loud, and I also realized I could hear a pulsating sound in my right ear. That turned out to be pulsatile tinnitus.

      I've since gotten off the drugs. They were, in the order that my doctor prescribed them: Lisinopril, then Propranolol, then Toprol XL, then hydrochlorothiazide. I got myself off all the drugs back in October 2010, and am taking natural supplements, just like you. My ringing is much better, but I still have the pulsating tinnitus.

      It sounds like you did the right thing by getting off the drugs, as long as your blood pressure is under control. Mine is definitely under control now (I take my blood pressure daily), and my pulsating is much calmer/quieter.

      Please do keep us updated on your progress!
       
      • Like Like x 1
    8. tencount
      Surrender

      tencount Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      thanks Karen,

      seems like our situation is real similar. since last post the tinnitus continued to improve up until today. its loud again all of a sudden and with the echos too. it still isnt as loud as when it first started but it is quite noticeable and annoying. as for getting off the drugs i quit cold turkey on it and for the first few days i had palpitations, tiredness, pulse at 80, bp of 150/90 and general weakness. i almost ended up taking a pill, but kept telling myself "this is all withdrawal it will be okay" and what do you know a few days later(yesterday) all of the crummy feelings are gone. now my bp (last i checked) is 122/80 with a pulse of 67. so as of right now i just have moderately annoying ringing and the echos. its only been a week since ive stopped taking the bp meds so im hopeful with time and rest the t and echos will be manageable or gone.

      i have read online regardless of the ear injury (accoustic, ototoxicity, physical) that these take quite a bit of time to heal(if they even heal). so maybe i should just give more time for nature to do its work. also another question, my dad in an attempt to make me feel better told me that when he was my age he suffered perforated ear drums due to an infection he never got checked. as a result he had similar symptoms to me loud ringing for months and distorted sounds. but hes over that now, he says he has a very mild ring now and no more hearing distortion. was that the work of neuroplasticity? ie his brain adapting to the physical changes over time. i know our situations are different but should i use his story as a basis that i may get well someday(at least to keep me sane for now)?
       
    9. Karen
      Talkative

      Karen Manager Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Ambassador

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      First time: Noise 2nd Time: Ototoxic drug
      Hi, @tencount,

      Yes, your situation sounds very similar to mine. The metropolol was the last of the blood pressure drugs I took, too. (Toprol XL is the same as metropolol). However, it took me a much longer time (like, about 2 years!) to get my body back on track again after getting off the meds. For a long time, I felt the weakness, palpitations, wildly fluctuating blood pressure, tiredness, etc., and am just now beginning to feel better. My blood pressure is now normal, too. When I took it earlier this evening, it was 115/79, with a 63 pulse.

      I think it has to do with age, though, because I'm now 67 years old. (Probably older than your dad!) It is harder for one's body to adjust to changes, the older we get. Natural supplements work a lot better for me than drugs, because they can be really hard on the body, and the side effects can be really devastating.

      Yes, I think you should feel optimistic that what your dad said might also work for you, eventually. Neuroplasticity has a lot to do with it, and I think you have a good chance of getting well, or improving a lot, over the next year. Don't expect big changes quickly, but gradually, I think you'll find you're not so aware of the tinnitus any more. Stay strong, and keep me posted on how you're progressing!!
       
    10. tencount
      Surrender

      tencount Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      an almost 2 month update,

      I started HBOT treatment at the 5th week of my tinnitus went for 14 sessions the first 10 being 1hr30min and the last 4 at 1hr. Also during the HBOT I took these supplements: fish oil, multi-vitamin, vitamin e, c, folic acid, bioflavonoid, piracetam, inositol/choline, magnessium, fiber, idebonone, hawthorne, motherwort, and garlic.

      I have since stopped most of the supplementation after the last session of HBOT and only just take multivitamin and vitamin e.

      1st week of HBOT results the T went down by about 10% it was always silent after the procedure but eventually got back to being semi loud again a few hours after. the amount of "good" T days increased as somedays i would wakeup with lower t. but it fluctuated.

      2nd week of HBOT same results as the first week with an additional 10% lowering of base volume it was always near silent right after the procedure. i started getting more "good" t days. with 4 out of the 7 days of the week being moderate but tolerable.

      3rd week of HBOT same pattern as week 2nd, i think i left the treatment with about a 30% overall reduction of the base tinnitus.

      After HBOT I still had the "kindling" or winding effect of my tinnitus where the more sounds i hear during the day the louder it got. And i was sensitive to certain frequencies for example the white noise generated by my bathroom air vacuum caused my t to get temporarily louder. for most of the days after the treatment my ringing was mostly quiet in the morning and bad at night. this was something i could live with as opposed to the always loud most days (except for a few days it was low for some reason).

      Also after hbot I stopped taking most of the supplements like idebonone, piracetam, and inositol. And noticed about 1 week after stopping those the "kindling" effect of my tinnitus reduced. And i no longer got the morning buzz. I wonder if it were these supplements that were making my perception of t louder.

      I am now almost in the 2nd week after HBOT and my T has probably reduced by an additional 40%. It has been 5 days now with the T not winding up and staying a constant almost unnoticable ring. Also when i cover my ear the pitch has changed. Before it was a sharp pure tone of between 4000-6000hz now it sounds like a very soft light seashell type sound. the new t sound when covering my ears is a lot less intrusive and looks very easy to habituate to.


      Other notes:
      Despite several doctors prescriptions of taking various antidepressants i decided not to go that route. I felt that when someone loses the ability to hear certain frequencies the brains job is to rewire itself thats why i decided to go with taking piracetam and inositol/choline as they increase gabba instead of suppressing it. And in doing this I think it helped big time with my recovery process especially the last few weeks after hbot.

      Also i started listening to music louder (60db on headphones). Before I had it where I could hear the t a long with the music, as most people have suggested in posts. when I made the switch to listening to the music to completely mask my t ive found that when turning off the music and going to a quieter room, the t has become more unnoticeable. I think this worked for me because i'm exposing my brain to sounds it can hear instead of letting the T sound come along for the ride. So when I went to quieter settings my brain begins to hunt for these sounds its able to hear.

      My t still winds up today, but its not even close to being intrusive as it was 2 weeks ago. I can only hope I will be getting more improvement because each week I do notice a difference in its loudness and it always seems to be getting lower.

      I would say overall if I could rate my T from what it was when it started to how it is now. (Note: My t did vary the whole time I would get odd 3/10 days in the first 5 weeks however they were short lived and only lasted about a few hours before it went back to base loud). I would say my base t was a 9/10 in the first 2 weeks, during the hbot treatment 5/10, and 2 weeks after hbot 2/10.

      I can only hope to continue to progress. So far my T has gotten better it has not gotten worse. The way I feel today and the last 4 days is great. I am already very pleased with how far I've gone so i'm crossing my fingers that I continue to improve or at least stay the way it is currently.


      (note: sorry for forgetting to put caps on some words bad habit of mine)
       

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