Will Prednisone Help? Multitone, ETD, Barotrauma

Discussion in 'Support' started by MartinP, Nov 12, 2016.

    1. MartinP

      MartinP Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ETD, Barotrauma
      Hello everyone,
      I have been reading this forum for a while and was hoping you could give me a hand with my tinnitus case.

      I am a 35-year-old male living in a valley in Oregon. It all began back in mid July when I noticed my right eye pupil was bigger than the left one. I also felt congestion in the ears and sinuses. When I touch or scracth my right side of the head, on top of the ear, I feel an instant itch right to the eye, and it gets red. I had an MRI, no tumors regarding the eye. They discarded acoustic neuroma regarding the tinnitus. Before the MRI however, my tinnitus started. What happened was that I was blowing my nose when my right nostril somehow blocked and air went back inside the ear, causing pain and almost an instant faint hissing in my right ear. I was able to ignore it for a while, then, on the day they did a blood panel and an x ray of my neck to discard a mass to my vertebra, something happened. This was in mid August. As I drove back in the car, the faint hissing sound became loud. Only in the right ear. From there on, things got much worse.

      I tried to get an appointment with an ENT but they would not give me one for 2 months or longer. I went to urgent care. I began taking Flonase and Azythromax. On the first day taking the medications, my tinnitus changed from a "peaceful" radio hissing to a mix of high-pitched sounds. The hissing was still there. On the 3rd day, the tinnitus went to my left ear (which was intact until then). It all became louder.

      Back to urgent care, the doctor told me my ear drums looked like balloons and liquid was trapped in the middle ear. She diagnosed me with otitis media and also said that I had an "allergy" of some type and put me on Zyrtec , suggesting to start Prednisone if the matter didn't resolve in 2 weeks.

      I waited 6 days before starting with the prednisone. Zyrtec didn't do anything for me. Until then I was able to mask the sounds, I continued taking Zyrtec and began Prednisone 20 mg for 7 days, if I recall correctly. Noises were still there, but I believe my ears cleared up at some point because of a foul smell and feeling that came down my throat one day, and was left without the feeling of ear fullness. However, an event took place during the days I was taking the prednisone that left me with some sort of reactive tinnitus or hyperaccusis. As with most people who begin suffering from this, I was making sure my ears didn't suffer from loud noises but didn't use ear plugs. I simply avoided loud noises. My dog suddenly barked in my right ear, very closely, and almost intantly my ear popped. I freaked out. I was scared and reacted like I had been shot. I was worried. Hours later, I began feeling distorted sounds. Until then, sounds were clear and would mask tinnitus. That day everything changed. Tinnitus began vibrating when I talked and external sounds, such as fans, which used to mask my noises, became a trigger. My own voice reverberated and bothered me.

      I am not sure what caused that, but things got way worse later.

      After about 1 week and a half of stopping Prednisone and Zyrtec, I also noticed different tones under the hissing. It sounded like a hard drive from a computer on the right ear and morse code in the left ear. This was activated by sounds as well, but it wasn't too bothersome. So I was left with a multitone tinnitus. These sounds, eventually, became less prevalent and the hissing would cover them, only to be heard in really silent places and when the hissing was down a notch or two.

      I went back to urgent care (was still waiting for the ENT appointment at the time) a and a different doctor said my T was caused by barotrauma when I blew my nose, and that liquid was no longer inside the ears. He prescribed some antibiotics and asured me they wouldn't cause more ringing in the ears (knowing some are ototoxic), but as soon as I read the common side effects, that was one of them. Why he prescribed antibiotics I am not sure, but he seemed to be confused as well. He said no infection was apparent. I did not take the antibiotics.

      I was getting about 3 hours of sleep a day. I couldn't eat. Eeverytime I swallowed food, my ear pops and my throat feels narrow.

      In mid September I finally had the appointment with the ENT and had the typical hearing test, measuring pressure in the ears and such. The doctor told me my hearing was normal and "welcome to tinnitus, it will get better, sorry you feel bad". He didn't look inside my nose. He barely inspected my ears.

      About a week later, in mid September, my tinnitus was getting a little lower in intensity when a frying pan startled me and hell began. It all turned upside down. Every sound became more reactive. I could not watch TV anymore. I could not listen to the radio. Everything was distorted. My own voice hurt me. Putting clothes on, the sound of fabric, was hurtful. Paper, plastic bags, all of those hurt my ears. I went to my family doctor and my blood pressure was lo low, she was concerned. I had lost it. I never needed any drugs to keep me up. I had lost about 10 lbs in 1 month. I was at 131 lbs when tinnitus began. I am now at 115 lbs. She prescribed Lorezapam and sped up the process to get to a different ENT, as she felt the first one had not looked at me properly. She also told me to get a full blood panel again.

      Lorezapam helped. It helped me sleep. It lowered the sounds and calmed me down. I started taking the benzo in mid September, taking about 1.5 mg a day. I was able to get 7 to 8 hours of sleep. Little by little, I began feeling better. Tinnitus was not bothering me as much, but still reactive to external noises. I could only hear the morse code and hard drive when I was very calm, and sometimes it wasn't there.

      Back to my main care physician, I asked to get tested for Lyme disease, Ankylosing spondylitis, Hypothyroid, Thalassemia (a form of anemia, as my father as the minor type) and a full blood panel.

      ENT appointment was about 1 week ago and the doctor said I had a lot of inflammation inside my nose and ears. He told me I needed an allergy test. He said my hearing was abnormal (as in good) and that I had the hearing of a 6-year-old.

      Allergy test hasn't been done yet, things are very slow in this country, apparently, but ENT will see me at the end of the month.

      Things got better for me for the past week or so, being able to watch TV again, and the reactive tinnitus going away most of the time, no morse code or hard drive sounds... until last Saturday. I went to the city next to my town and my ears popped again, while in the car passing through the mountains. Next day, I blew my nose, carefully BUT THEN it happened again! Just like what supposedly started my tinnitus hit me again. Air came back from my right nostril into my ear. It didn't hurt, but the noise changed and it became more reactive again. The ear fullness began again. Sounds, ironically, became clearer as in I could hear more external noises. But the morse code and hard drive sounds are now audible even when Im not in silent rooms. The hard drive noise sometimes becomes a full beeeeeeeep for a long time. The hissing is always there, up and down, it has maybe lowered itself a bit. Hissing is still not able to be masked completly while watching TV. I leave music on at night, as white noise doesn't cover it either and activates the hissing more. It's still high pitch sometimes, but goes up and down in tone. I can't concentrate to read just yet. I am struggling sometimes to write this.

      My question is, did I cause barotrauma once again after blowing my nose last Sunday and should I take Prednisone right away? It's been 5 days since it happened, approximately, and still hear the morse code and hard drive sounds. Right ear is reacting to sounds, and before this event, it was barely reacting anymore, while the left ear is so good and not reacting as much. Will Prednisone avoid possible cochlear damage or is it too late? Could it be just that it was irritated? I have still pills from last time and could do a 7-10 day course, but doctors are NOT taking me in on time. I don't want these new sounds to become permanent. Since the ENT said I had a huge inflammation inside the nose and the Eustachian Tube Dysfunction is still there. Right ear keeps popping and even hurting, all the way down my throat. When I speak, I feel that vibration on my head and nose again and tinnitus increases. Will Lorezapam (I am down to 0.12 approx a day, tapering) interact with Prednisone? Could the hyperaccusis I developed and the multitones have something to do taking Prednisone back then?

      I do understand I should have been put on a longer and more powerful Prednisone course from the start, correct? Why doctors missed this, I don't know and it pains me so much.

      I really appreciate each and one of you for helping so many people deal with this intrusive condition. Before this, I was a healthy person. Never been depressed until now. Never had psychological issues or anxiety before. My social life is so difficult now and my wife and family have had a horrible time dealing with this as well. I used to love radio, books, movies, writing... I am so messed up right now I can't do those anymore without suffering.

      Thank you so much for your kindness and hoping a cure it is soon available to everyone.

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