Tinnitus Worse After a CT Scan with Oral and IV Contrast — Anybode Else?!

Discussion in 'Support' started by quietatnight, Nov 22, 2021.

    1. quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      Hello everyone.

      I had to have a CT scan with oral and IV contrast 6 days ago. When I got home after the scan, that night my tinnitus seems to have gotten worse. It seems to keep changing from higher to lower every other day.

      I did some research before I had the scan done and everything I read, and what doctors had told me was that “the contrast, oral or IV, is NOT ototoxic and will NOT cause any damage to your hearing.“ I got the same information from Dr. Nagler's post that I found on Tinnitus Talk.

      I was just wondering if anyone here has had any experience with this or heard anything about this subject.

      Thank you in advance for any information that you have to share, I would really appreciate it.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
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    2. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      I did the same test a few months ago. No change in my tinnitus.
       
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @GregCA, thank you for responding.

      May I ask what was your CT scan for? Mine was my abdominal area intestines, stomach, liver, gallbladder and other surrounding digestive organs. I wonder if they give a person more contrast for that than if they were only scanning just an ear or a hand. That would mean the dose amount of contrast would vary quite a bit depending on what part of the body you’re having imaged and probably put a person at a higher risk of ending up with an ototoxic reaction?

      I have had CT scans with contrast done before with no problems but that was a few years ago. I’m very surprised that I had a reaction.

      Also, I did make a stupid mistake and fell asleep before I drank a lot of water when I got home from the test. I had forgot all about that step, I drank a couple of bottles when I woke up the next morning. I read a post from a CT tech, he said that most of the contrast is already out of your system before you even leave the hospital. I guess it gets into the bladder pretty fast and urinated out.

      Anyway, I’m just kicking myself for just not refusing the contrast. Never again. I just hope that my tinnitus will settle back down to its baseline in a few days.

      Thank you.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    4. SB1981

      SB1981 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Multifactorial
      Dr. Nagler said in the rare instances a worsening was reported it was transient. Hopefully that holds true and it will resolve quickly.
       
    5. Matchbox
      Wishful

      Matchbox Member

      Location:
      BC Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced, Prednisone (drones), Barotrauma (distortions)
      What is funny is that my tinnitus actually improved from the IV contrast.

      It is an iodinated molecule which breaks down to iodine. So could be doing something thyroid related... maybe?

      Or the fact that it is saline and just more fluid than usual.

      It didn't help me forever and faded over a day.
       
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    6. valeri

      valeri Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2011
      I had an abdominal CT with IV and oral contrast in August and it spiked me only temporarily, for a few weeks. It will settle down. So far I've only heard of temporary spikes from the contrast dye.

      Try not to stress too much, you will be fine!
       
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    7. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I had a chest CT with contrast done in 2017 and there was no change in my tinnitus either.

      I think it will pass, Louie. Take care of yourself, buddy, it’s good to see you again.
       
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    8. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      Mine was also the same as yours.
       
    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @valeri, thank you for your response and encouraging support.

      I was wondering if you remember if you drank a lot of water and about how much, when you got back from your scan in August? (I keep asking myself did I drink enough water soon enough to get all of that poison out of my system). Also, about how many weeks it took for your tinnitus to get back down to your baseline?

      Sorry for all the questions but I do appreciate any information you can give me.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @Ed209, may I ask do you remember if you drank a lot of water when you got home from your scan and, if so, about how much?

      I can’t help thinking that me falling asleep after I got home and not starting to drink a lot of water is the reason for my spike that I’m going through. I just don’t know what I was thinking. Part of the problem was the CT tech never told me to ”drink a lot of water.“ What a stupid thing for me to do. I should have known better. I’m having an impossible time dealing with that. I have done a lot of research in the past few days and everyone seems to have a different opinion on the subject. Some have even said that the IV contrast is already out of system before you even leave the hospital when the bladder is emptied.

      Anyway, I’m just sick over this, I feel like I made so many bad choices and I keep beating myself up over it.

      Thank you for your support as always I really do appreciate it.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    11. ajc

      ajc Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2002; spike 2009; worse 2017-18
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud music - noise damage
      Stop being paranoid.

      Lack of drinking lots of water after the scan has nothing to do with your spike.

      What is making your spike worse is that you're now constantly analyzing it, listening for it, and thinking if it's back to baseline.

      Go watch a movie, go hiking, do something fun to take your mind off of it.
       
    12. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @ajc, you’re right I do tend to catastrophize things and always think the worst. I have OCD and I tend to get stuck in a loop so I do understand what you mean. It's difficult at times for me to break these loops when I’m going through one of these bad spikes. I do try and ignore it but it’s difficult as you know. I only have had 2 hours sleep a night the past couple of days. It’s been very tough.

      Thank you for your kind encouraging words and support.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    13. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I don’t remember drinking anything if I’m honest, and I don’t recall them telling me to, either.
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @Ed209, do you remember if you had oral contrast or IV contrast or both? And what part was your CT scan imaging?
       
    15. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      I don’t know if this is important or not but my CT scan was a week ago on Tuesday, and
      my tinnitus started to increase on Wednesday morning, Thursday it was very bad, then when I woke up Friday my tinnitus was totally gone and back to my baseline, then Saturday it was back up again, then Sunday totally gone and back to my baseline, Monday it was back up again and now today on Tuesday it’s very loud.

      I thought that this is interesting.

      I’m not sure what it means though, I would think that it’s an encouraging sign that I had a couple of good normal days. I was thinking if I had done any permanent damage to my hearing, it wouldn’t go down to normal, not even for a couple of days.

      Is it fair to think that?
       
    16. Lane

      Lane Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Single 25 mg dose of (anticholinergic) drug Promethazine
      Hi @quietatnight -- You may want to check out this video on the wife of Chuck Norris who almost died from gadolinium poisoning (from an MRI).

      FULL MEASURE: June 11, 2017 - Fighting For Her Life
       
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @Lane, that was a very interesting video, it's very scary and alarming to even imagine that something like this could happen. I’m willing to bet these companies knew about the side effects of this drug. They just had too much invested in R&D to just shut it down and take it off the market right away. It’s always about the money.

      Thank you for taking the time to share this with me.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
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    18. valeri

      valeri Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2011
      No I didn’t drink any water. I was in hospital for bowel obstruction so I had a tube shoved down my nose and throat to release abdominal pressure. So no drinking or food, just IV fluids which were set to 100 ml per hour.

      I remember 3 years ago a bit of pulsatile tinnitus after the same contrast combo but only for a week or two.

      Same with this one in August.

      You will be fine, it should subside soon. Could it be anxiety regarding the procedure?
       
    19. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @valeri, thank you for your last message, I really appreciate your kind and supportive words. Knowing that I was not the only one that did not drink a lot of water after the test was very encouraging to me.

      I hope that your doing well.

      Please stay safe from the virus.

      Thank you.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    20. Damocles
      No Mood

      Damocles Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otitis media
      Yo @quietatnight,

      My tinnitus was made worse by an MRI in 2015, but it was the noise and inadequate hearing protection that did it, not the contrast dye.
      So, I can attest, I myself was indeed told to drink a f*ck load (not in those exact words) of water over the course of the week following the intravenous administering of the contrast dye, by the radiologist.
      Just off the back of the advice I was given, I'm going to have to go ahead and say I doubt this is the case.

      I was told in no uncertain terms to drink lots of water over the next 7 days.

      But then, maybe my radiologist was just being over-cautious to be on the safe side...(?)
      Well, this is just a waste of time I'm afraid. I had the exact same emotional reaction after my permanent worsening due to the scan, but over time I've come to terms with the fact that, without it, the fear and anxiety of not ruling out the health issue it was suspected I might have in the first place, would probably have shortened my lifespan considerably anyway.

      At the point I was given the all clear a month later, most of the regret and self-chastisement were alleviated, and my tinnitus has improved a lot since then.

      Same can happen for you, just give it time.
       
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    21. Damocles
      No Mood

      Damocles Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otitis media
      This is crazy.

      I've read a list of around 100,000 things that won't kill Chuck Norris and then his wife almost dies of an MRI contrast dye. o_O

      Norris definitely married down in terms of genetics.

      chuck1.jpg

      chuck2.jpg

      chuck3.jpg

      chuck4.jpg

      chuck5.jpg
       
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    22. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @Damocles, I had a conversation with 2 of the hospital pharmacists where I had my CT scan done. They told me that the contrast dyes that are used today are a lot less of a problem then they were years ago, and do clear out of the body within 24 to 48 hours and are not ototoxic. I was given “Lopamidol“ not “Gadolium“ that was the drug that Chuck Norris’s wife had gotten in that video.

      Update:

      Since I had the CT scan over 2 weeks ago, I seemed to be improving. I have a couple of days where my tinnitus is bad and then I have a couple of days where it’s totally quiet and then the cycle repeats itself. I have no idea why it’s doing this, I’m hoping that this is a sign that I’m recovering slowly over time.

      I’m sorry that you had a bad experience with your MRI scan, I know that they can be fairly loud. I have had my share of them over the years with no problems. I use foam earplugs and then I put my gun earmuffs over them and I’m ok. The gun earmuffs that I use are totally all plastic so they are not a problem during the test.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
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    23. valeri

      valeri Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2011
      @quietatnight, I’m not sure what was the IV contrast I got but I took a photo of the oral solution as I had to consult Dr Google for safety ;)

      Also glad to see you are getting better.
       

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    24. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      Sorry Louie, I didn't get an alert for this so I wasn't ignoring you. I had IV contrast and the scan was on my chest.
       
    25. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @valeri, I just saw your last post and I noticed your contrast was different than what I had. My oral contrast was called “READI-CAT“ and my IV contrast was “Lopamidol.“ There seems to be a lot of different contrast drugs that are used for the CT scans, I think that is interesting. I just went back up to a post you made where you said “you just were given IV fluids 100 ml per hour.“ I wonder if that's the same as if you drank a lot of water? Or just used to keep you hydrated. Or used to help you get rid of the contrast because you couldn't have any water, and if so, would it work any faster or slower? It's an interesting question.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
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    26. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @Ed209, that’s ok, I miss some posts too, when I’m reading through a lot of them at one time.

      I’m finding out there are a lot of different contrasts out there both oral and IV. I had ”READI-CAT“ for oral and “Lopamidol“ for IV.

      Thank you for getting back to me.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    27. valeri

      valeri Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      09/2011
      I’m really not sure which way is better but I guess drinking water would be much quicker to dilute it and flush out. IV will keep you hydrated but it can’t have the same effect as drinking water on something you digested.

      When I had oral contrast put through the tube, I had first X-ray shortly after, second one 90 minutes later and last one later in the evening. I’m not sure if all dyes are the same but maybe what I had was more potent and longer lasting to allow X-rays being taken so far apart.

      Having good days again is definitely a good sign of you slowly improving. Give it another week and this will be a distant memory.

      Take care!
       
    28. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      quietatnight
      Frustrated

      quietatnight Member

      Location:
      Rockford IL
      Tinnitus Since:
      1990
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma / firecracker
      @valeri, I’m beginning to think that every case could be slightly different, different contrast drugs, different procedures, and other variables. You being in the hospital for days when you had your CT scan, me having my CT scan as an outpatient in one day. I would say that could make a difference with how much water is needed and when to drink after the test is done.

      When I went to sleep last night my tinnitus was very loud, so bad that I turned in early, but when I woke up this morning, and still now, I can barely hear my tinnitus at all. I just don’t understand it.

      Take care and stay safe from the virus.

      Louie
      Quietatnight
       
    29. Gabriel5050
      Dead

      Gabriel5050 Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise exposure (most likely)
      Not who you asked, but I also had a CT scan for my ears after getting tinnitus. No contrast substance though. Because there's no way I was going to do an MRI.

      After the scan I was scared by the spike it caused, but as far as I remember it was gone within a week. There's way worse noise out there compared to CT scan. Be more worried about traveling with ear protection. Earplugs / earmuffs or both. (Since you're saying your tinnitus is from noise).
       
    30. HopeforRelief

      HopeforRelief Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ototoxic Drug
      Hi Louie.

      I had the same experience you did. 4 years ago I had an abdominal scan with contrast. Did not drink enough water. Shortly thereafter woke up in the middle of the night with very loud tinnitus. Would be loud for one day and less loud the next. I was terrified. This has continued for the last four years, but now my off day is quiet. It always comes back on schedule. I am able to function on noisy days but it has been a struggle.

      Are you any better now?

      Steve
       
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