Sound Distortion Worse After Caloric Test — Advice?

Discussion in 'Support' started by tictacjak, Mar 16, 2021.

    1. tictacjak

      tictacjak Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Hi All,

      I haven't really posted a lot here but have lurked. I also have not been officially diagnosed with hyperacusis but it's the closest thing I can find that matches my symptoms.

      Anyway - around October of last year I started noticing a weird morse code like beeping in my left ear which eventually seemed to get overlaid over every sound (white noise, car engine running, faucet running, and the worst - music).

      I went to an ENT who ordered an MRA of the head and neck and a VNG test.

      During the VNG test they also did the caloric testing where they put warm and cold air into your ear to see how your eyes react.

      Immediately after this test I noticed that the sound distortions were 1000% worse. In addition to the original distortion there is now a strange hollow hum/echo that sounds like when you rub the edge of a wine glass. I mentioned this to both the audiologist that did the VNG test as well as my ENT and they are pretty much at a loss. They told me it must just be some sort of temporary sensitivity that will fade.

      However - it's now been 3 WEEKS into this hell and it is showing no sign of going away. No idea how any of this started.

      I'm only 29 - never listen to music loud or any thing loud for that matter and have never gone to any loud concerts or anything.

      Is there anything I can do at this point? I'm wondering if I should go to the doctor and ask about prednisone or something similar - although not sure how much it would help at this point. Any advice is greatly appreciated as this is just absolutely taking over my life.
       
      • Hug Hug x 2
    2. FGG
      No Mood

      FGG Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Multi-factorial
      Do you know why they ordered the caloric testing? Were you having dizziness or vertigo? Was the test normal?

      It's possible you had some middle ear issues to start with (tensor tympani syndrome can cause dizziness, for instance, without other classic vertigo signs) and the test just irritated the system (in which case ear rest might help along with magnesium supplementation).

      Also, having had both the air and the water caloric testing myself, the air is pretty loud (the water is not).

      In addition to magnesium, I would take anti-oxidants like NAC and Astaxanthin.

      3 weeks out, Prednisone isn't likely to help and may make your anxiety worse, unfortunately.

      It may help you to know that 3 weeks is nothing for seeing tinnitus improvements, most people take at least a few months if you read this forum.

      Also, as much as possible (i realize this is hard), try to relax. Stress increases the glutamate ratio in an unfavorable way that adds to likelihood of making it worse or not seeing improvements. This could take months to improve (8 to 9 months etc), so really try to hang in there. Most people do improve.
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      tictacjak

      tictacjak Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Thank you so much for taking the time to respond. I feel a little more at ease after reading that.

      To answer some of your questions - I have had some unexplained nausea / dizziness incidents in the past few years (most recently a few months ago in December where I actually lost consciousness for a few minutes). I have been to the ER each time it's happened and they were never able to find anything. I thought maybe it might be related to the sound distortions which is why I mentioned it to the ENT. As far as the test results - MRI and MRA were both normal. Caloric test was also normal although with the VNG test they noticed some abnormal nystagmus when laying on my right side. My ENT concluded that it might be from one of my medications (currently on Wellbutrin for depression and just came off of Lamotrigine for visual snow after deciding it wasn't working). I also tapered off of another anxiety / depression medication (Pristiq) starting in August (sound distortions started after I was pretty much completely off this so it could be related).

      I have thought about taking Magnesium - which kind do you think is most effective? I know it comes in a lot of forms (oxide, citrate, chloride).

      Thanks again!
       
    4. FGG
      No Mood

      FGG Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Multi-factorial
      Next to intramusclar injections of Magnesium, I find the liquid to be by far the most effective. I take liquid Magnesium chloride (oral formation, not the topical version). Fair warning, it tastes worse than probably anything else I have ever had in my mouth (I mask it with lime juice or grapefruit seltzer water as best as possible). Within a week or two I can tell the difference, personally.
       
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