Patient Comments: Eustachian Tube Problems - Altitude and Air Travel


Did air travel or a change in altitude cause your Eustachian tube problems? Please share your experience. Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Free, 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: January 02

I have hearing problems. The change in air pressure actually causes my ears to pop open, improving my hearing until landing. I need to find a way to replicate the experience in land to solve my eustachian tube problems.

Comment from: foster, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: November 19

After flying I was left with a feeling of ear fullness and the Eustachian tube problem still persists now two months later.

Comment from: Dee, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 12

I have had problems for years trying to go under water so I cannot learn how to swim due to my eustachian tube problems. I can snorkel only if I wear ear plugs in my ears. I had the same issues, especially the pain I have flying, but only when the plane is going to land. I saw an ENT for years. He could never find anything. I heard my heartbeat super loud, I began to hear swishing water in my ear and a little loss of hearing. I finally lost my hearing in one ear. I went back to the ENT. He did tell me that the eustachian tube was not working correctly, but then recommended me to a neurologist who determined that I was leaking cerebral spine fluid from my skull into my ear. The fluid had finally built up and it clogged up my ear. Unfortunately, I had to have a craniotomy done to cover the holes that were in my skull and where the fluid was coming from. It has been 9 months since my surgery and most things went away, but now I have twitching in my left eyelid every day for the last 2 weeks. It is very annoying. The doctors still have not determined a way to fix my eustachian tube.

Comment from: sedohr4, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: June 14

In March 2016, during a flight my left ear became stopped up. My Eustachian tube is still blocked since last year. My physician says I have no wax nor liquid, but I feel pressure in the ear and pain at times. In Sept 2017 I have a long flight and am concerned that it could cause serious problems with my ear. I do not know what to do about this.

Comment from: PattyC, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: December 29

I've had problems in the past with flying, so I'm always careful about using the special ear plugs and chewing gum and candy to keep my ears open. Last week, I made the mistake of sleeping through the landing and my left ear became very painful and I couldn't hear. I did have a mild cold at the time. The pain eventually subsided, but I still can't hear (10 days now). I've tried everything and I've never had the problem for this long, so off to the doctor I go. I will never sleep on a plane again.

Comment from: clb, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: October 21

I can no longer fly or hike in high altitude due to my eustachian tube problems. The tubes work, but the side effects are hard to deal with. I have stuffiness (and lack of some hearing), hearing my pulse in my ears, especially at night; and last time there was some problem with one ear that developed hard black stuff until I could barely hear out of it and had to get it removed.

Comment from: Rick, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: August 08

I'm a 68 year old man and I can't say I ever had a problem with my ears plugging except for colds, altitude changes, etc. I'm a professional singer and have been for 45 years. Just in the past 6 months, I have found, if I sing for an extended time, it's down to an hour now, my right ear especially, will plug up! It's like having a cold. It turns my vocals into loud buzzing in my ears! Both ears are, now, being affected. If I plug my left nostril and snort very hard, my right ear will pop and my hearing returns to normal! But it doesn't last if I continue singing. I have a doctor's appointment soon and I plan to ask him if there's anything that can be done. I have a guess what may be contributing. When I sing, since my jawbone is right next to my eustachian tube, I believe, it gets irritated and swells shut! That's why popping my ear is only a momentary relief. I hope the only solution doesn't boil down to giving up singing!

Comment from: Trisha, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: July 05

Travelling through the mountains made my stuffy ear problem worse. Many years ago I suffered for nine years with a plugged up left ear that started in April and caused me to have violent vertigo and vomiting and then in the fall when it got cool the ear unplugged and my hearing returned to normal and no more vertigo. I was later diagnosed with allergies to grass and mold. I went on injections and the problem stopped for twenty five years. Then I got a flu shot and the problem started again. I was tested for allergies again and was told I'm not allergic to anything. My left ear is now plugged up with mild hearing loss for almost two years now. Some days it is better but if the weather is very hot and humid I have to take Claritin to function. By the way for everyone I know who has a similar problem, it is always the left ear.

Comment from: PP, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: April 12

The first time I went on a long-distance flight was in 1998. That was the first time I experienced air-pressure problems. I was told it was a normal occurrence and it would clear up once I landed. Now, 15 years later, I am still dealing with this. I went to an ENT specialist three times and he irrigated my ears (which I just read is the wrong way to go about it). It only worsened my situation. I am planning on going for a more thorough scan this week. I hope I am not too late.


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