Pulsatile Tinnitus

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by buffy, Jul 17, 2014.

tinnitus forum
    1. buffy

      buffy Member

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2013
      I've had pulsatile tinnitus since January 2013. Recently it's gotten worse. It's in my left ear. I've had an MRI and nothing untoward was found.

      Sometimes I'm afraid that sth is going to burst inside my head. I came here to try and find out more about this and to connect with others experiencing the same thing. Just knowing that there are others surviving with this problem is comforting to me.
       
    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, Buffy,

      We're glad you've joined Tinnitus Talk! I have pulsatile tinnitus, too (right ear only). I've had it for about 4 years now, and have been to several doctors, and had a number of tests, including MRI/MRA, CT scan, Doppler of carotid artery. All came out negative. However, my pulsating hasn't gotten worse; it has remained about the same, and/or actually seems a little better.

      Have you been to more than one doctor for your condition, and have they suggested any more tests for you? You might try going to a neurologist or neurotolgist, to see if they might have additional suggestions. Also, it has been suggested that those of us with pulsatile tinnitus might want to circulate our test results, to have another specialist look at them to see if they can see anything that might have been missed or overlooked.

      Are you having any other symptoms, such as headaches, eye/vision problems, etc? That can sometimes indicate another condition -- IIH (benign intracranial hypertension), which is a buildup of fluid around the brain. It is a common cause of "whooshing" in many individuals.

      You might want to check out Whooshers.com, a website devoted to pulsatile tinnitus. They also have a Facebook group for pulsatile tinnitus sufferers to share information and provide support.

      Please don't give up; pulsatile tinnitus is a difficult condition to live with, but it is considered highly curable if a cause can be found.

      Best wishes,
      Karen
       
    3. Marlene
      English

      Marlene Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Poole Dorset England
      Tinnitus Since:
      July 1996
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bacterial virus
      Hi Karen question?would an optician be able to pick this up,they seem to know more from an eye test before any dr or hospital,is that maybe why some don't get a proper diagnosis for so long.My first port of call for long standing head ache is to go get eye test,especially if you've got tinnitus,and problems going with it.
      Until I got it I always though it was a ringing in the ears,but it's surprised me how one gets other things associated with it.What an eye opener all this is relating to it.
       
    4. buffy

      buffy Member

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2013
      Thank you, Karen! I've only been to my GP, who referred me to a ear-nose-and throat doctor at the hospital. I was given an MRI and they found nothing abnormal. This was almost a year ago. I haven't done any more investigating. I don't think I can contact a neurologist on my own, I think I need to be referred by my GP. The tinnitus wasn't too bad back then, but now it's worse. I hear it all the time. It really scares me. Do you think I ought to go back to my GP? Shouldn't they've picked up on an elevated ICP in the MRI I did? I do have frequent headaches and problems with vision.
       
    5. 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
      @Marlene ,

      Yes, it is possible that an ophthalmologist (I don't know about an optician) could pick up on a lot of conditions just by examining your eyes. I think they could see any abnormalities that might lead them to think there was high intracranial pressure. But -- I'm no doctor, so I'm not sure. In my case, I did have an eye exam by an ophthalmologist the first year I got pulsatile tinnitus. No abnormalities were found. Thanks for suggesting this, and I hope your headaches are getting better!

      Take care,
      Karen
       
    6. 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, @buffy,

      Yes, I think it might be a good idea for you to return to your GP to be checked out, just in case there is something new to be found. To tell you the truth, ENT's don't usually know a lot about pulsatile tinnitus, and they may refer you to someone else. They mostly treat the run-of-the-mill ear infections, etc. My ENT referred me to a neurotologist to be checked out further.

      Your GP would be a good place to start, and you should definitely mention the headaches and vision problems. He could perhaps test you for high intracranial pressure (?). I don't know how they do that, but I have heard of many people having a lumbar puncture if IIH was suspected.

      A question: Do you have both pulsatile tinnitus and ringing/hissing tinnitus in your left ear? I'm asking because I have both. Before the PT started, I had a mild form of regular tinnitus in my right ear for about 25 years. My PT started four years ago, after taking a blood pressure drug.

      Did yours start gradually, or suddenly? Did you just wake up with it one day?

      Are you in the U.S.? On Whooshers.com, there are some recommendations of specialist doctors who are familiar with PT. One doctor is in New York, and one is in Baltimore. In the UK, I've heard that people have had good luck at Addenbrooke's Hospital.

      Take care, and please keep me posted on how you're doing, and what you decide to do about returning to the doctor.

      P.S. --- You could try Googling the symptoms for benign intracranial hypertension, to see if you think they might apply to you. Then, you could mention it to your doctor on your next visit.

      Best wishes,
      Karen
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    7. buffy

      buffy Member

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2013
      Thank you, Karen!
      I'll call my GP first thing tomorrow. Before low sounds like distant traffic obscured the whooshing, now the whooshing can be heard over the tv even. I checked out Whooshers - really scary! I've not had my my carotids checked or been checked for a papillary edema.

      I just have pulsatile tinnitus, no other kind. It was sudden onset in Jan 2013. I made a note of it in my diary, because it seemed so strange.

      I'm in Sweden, where we have public health care - it's not very good though.
       
    8. 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, Buffy,

      Yes, sometimes Whooshers.com scares me, too! Most of the time, though, pulsatile tinnitus is not anything serious. It's good to be checked by your doctor to rule anything out, but most likely all is well. I've never found a cause for mine, but it has gotten much, much better recently. The ringing/hissing is pretty quiet today, and I can't really hear my whooshing right now. Why? I don't know; I just finally determined not to worry about it and live my life as much like before as possible. Also, since mine was blood pressure-related, I got my blood pressure under control through exercise and natural supplements, and no longer take blood pressure meds.

      I hope you are able to get an appointment with your GP some time soon!

      Take care, please don't worry, and try to remain as calm as possible. Yours may subside gradually on its own, as mine has done.

      Best wishes and hugs,
      Karen
       
    9. buffy

      buffy Member

      Location:
      Sweden
      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2013
      Thank you Karen!

      Your words made me feel better again, Whooshers kind of freaked me out! I don't have high blood pressure. Congrats to you for getting your BP under control without meds!

      I'll try to get some sleep now, it's midnight here. Thank you again for your very kind, informative and helpful answers!
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    10. James
      No Mood

      James Member Benefactor

      Location:
      California
      Tinnitus Since:
      Pulsing 03/2013
      @buffy
      I have pulsing tinnitus. When the pulsing intensifies,,,then its bad, as you might know. The ENT could not hear it with his scope, but I can. I hope you can cope. There is some living with it all, at least I want to believe that. We all manage to go on. I try to get my life on a schedule. But tonight I can't sleep, due to an issue in my life. Just wish you the best.
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    11. 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
      @James

      I agree with you that it's easier to cope with PT if you can get your life on a some kind of a schedule. That has mostly been working for me lately. Although I'm old enough to be a retiree, I still work part-time --- mostly for the distraction and sanity it provides! This keeps me on a regular schedule so that I don't have time think about the pulsating and the ringing so much. Mine gets better in the evening hours, so if I can just make till then, I feel I have survived another day successfully. Sleep helps, too, and if you can find a way to sleep most nights, your PT will probably calm down.

      I hope you have a good night tonight, and that things calm down for you again.

      Take care,
      Karen
       
      • Like Like x 2
    12. JAKUB
      Worried

      JAKUB Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      05/14
      I just got hit with this, so it seems...my ears are tingling and feels like and electric current..is this normal? ( my T is noise induced)
       
    13. Grace
      No Mood

      Grace Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/14/2013
      Can pulsitile T develop from noise induced T??? I was runnin with my dog and was out of breath and i still cant shake the habbit of pluggin my ears to check to see if anything and my heart was beatin fast and it felt like the pulse of it was in my ears but when i pulled my finger out i couldnt hear it. Maybe i just felt or heard my heart beating cause i plugged my ears? Confuseddd!!!--- felt like boom boom like a heartbeat sounds like.. Not loud or anything tho.
       
    14. 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, Grace,

      No, I don't think it is possible to develop PT from noise-induced T. PT is also known as "vascular tinnitus", and there is usually some sort of physical cause for the PT. I think your ears are more sensitive now since you have T, and you were hearing your pulse after a lot of exertion. For most of us with PT, it is a constant pulsating sound, not sporadic.

      Or at least, that's my opinion. Does anyone else have any thoughts on this subject?
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    15. Grace
      No Mood

      Grace Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/14/2013
      Do we have a pulse on the tip of our finger? Cause when i plug my ear i can like feel the pulse idk if its comin from my finger but i hear it too, again not loud but like a pulse. Idk maybe i need to chill and take a pill lol
       
    16. 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
      Grace,

      I just tried that in my non-pulsating ear (left ear), plugging my ear with my fingertip. I can hear a rumbling sound that does sound kind of like a heartbeat. So maybe that was what you were hearing. Believe me, if you had PT, you'd know it! Just relax, and don't worry about it; I think you're fine!
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    17. Aneta
      Supportive

      Aneta Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2006
      @buffy, I can totally relate to your uneasiness. I have had PT for almost 10 years. At first it was very bad and of the years it has gotten less until this bring when it got worse again. I have it in my right ear and it comes and goes depending on my head position or if I put my head upside down or if for instance I have squatting for a while and get up. Initially years ago I had an MRI and CTscan and didn't really find anything significant.
      SO for years I was relaxed with it, until it came back this spring and I started googling and found whooshers and other scary web-sites that freak me out, but I try to take Karen's advice that most PT is not from a serious underlying problem and since I'm still ok after so long.

      But saying that I want to find out the cause so I'm set up to got the a PT clinic in San Francisco to see specialists and get some sort of new form MRA/MRI that can see pretty much anything.. It will cost a lot of money for me out of my pocket, but I need piece of mind. If they don't find anything that means it's anything serious and I can at least not worry about it and cope with it etc.

      Good luck Buffy!
       

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