extreme outer ear pain

Posted by ellienewfan @ellienewfan, Feb 4, 2013

Please….someone help me.

I’ve visited my allergist, an ear-nose-throat specialist and my own internist.
None of them have ever heard of my problem and don’t know how to help me.

Started approx 20 yrs ago, Every couple of months I would get an awful pain on one of my ears if I had been laying on it during the night. It would happen to either ear, whichever one I laid on.

To describe the pain. It is so intense that it wakes me. Pain is NOT inside the ear but around the edges of the entrance of it. It is so painful, I can’t touch it. It will be throbbing. It also hurts tremendously behind, towards the bottom back of the ear. Can’t touch that either. The only thing that will make it go away is when I then get up and stand and within approx 30 min it is gone. I even tested it by massaging behind the ear (once I could bear to touch it) and it seemed to make pain go away faster.

The last approx 3 years, I have no longer been able to even lay on either ear when in bed because now the pain will come every time. I have learned to sleep on my back. Sometimes I would still move onto my side during night, and wake up with pain.

For last 6 months, I’ve been having pressure and achy feeling around one of the ears, even while laying on my back. Then I started getting the pain even while sleeping on my back.

I am very much afraid that the day will come when I will no longer be able to lay down in my bed to go to sleep.

I am desperate to get to the bottom of this and perhaps for first time in 20 years be able to comfortably lay on my side in bed.

My ENT doctor said my ears are healthy …. i have no hearing loss.

This ear pain, however, is starting to affect my daily living, since I don’t seem to be able to get the restful sleep I need.

I will be forever grateful if someone could pinpoint this. thanks.

@ellienewfan

at least i’m not alone in this. no redness, no swelling, etc. Doctors i saw (ear, nose, throat doc.; my own internist; had exrays and MRI) looked at me funny when i tried to explain my situation. thanks @bearylynn,i also have been bunching up a pillow so there is least amount of touching my ear. i seem to be able to somewhat lay on my left side, but my right cannot abide it. in fact if i even lay on right side even without anything touching my ear, i’ll still get it.terrible pain. i am currently 72, and think that perhaps i’ll never get rid of this and must suffer with this for rest of my life.

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I do realize that this post is 4 years old but I had to take a chance and put my input in. I have this issue as well and I am wondering; do any of you that have this issue, have fibromyalgia? I do and I am wondering if this could be that?

Peace

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@hippygrandma

I do realize that this post is 4 years old but I had to take a chance and put my input in. I have this issue as well and I am wondering; do any of you that have this issue, have fibromyalgia? I do and I am wondering if this could be that?

Peace

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Hi @hippygrandma, welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. While this discussion was started 4 years ago, it is still active. I'm confident that @ellienewfan @nibor63 @lioness @celesteh77 and others will join me in welcoming you. While we wait for the others to join in, I also want to let you know about the fibromyalgia discussions in the Chronic Pain group:
– Feeling at my wits end with Chronic Pain and Fibromyalgia https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/feeling-at-my-with-end-with-chronic-pain-and-fibromyalgia/
– Fibromyalgia https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/fibromyalgia-3/

Hippygrandma, Do you feel that fibro contributes to the outer ear pain? What have you tried to relieve the pain?

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@colleenyoung

Hi @hippygrandma, welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. While this discussion was started 4 years ago, it is still active. I'm confident that @ellienewfan @nibor63 @lioness @celesteh77 and others will join me in welcoming you. While we wait for the others to join in, I also want to let you know about the fibromyalgia discussions in the Chronic Pain group:
– Feeling at my wits end with Chronic Pain and Fibromyalgia https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/feeling-at-my-with-end-with-chronic-pain-and-fibromyalgia/
– Fibromyalgia https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/fibromyalgia-3/

Hippygrandma, Do you feel that fibro contributes to the outer ear pain? What have you tried to relieve the pain?

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@hippygrandma. Hi. Just thought I'd give u my experience w the ear pain. Had it since i was in my late 40's. Am now 76. As i got older it became worse. Also have allergies. Also started in late 40 s. Never made connection. Allergies would make me very sick day after flying. Allergist suggested i double up on my allergy pills. Was taking generic once a day. So i did. Could fly again without getting sick. For some reason i kept taking 2 pills. Last fall my left ear no longer hurt at all. A month later the right one stopped hurting. I've thought about it and the only thing different that i did was the allergy pills. BTW the doc said he thought my cartilage behind each ear was inflamed. But he had no cure. I had lots of tests done. No results showing anything wrong. I stopped doubling up on allergy pills. It started to come back. Resumed the two pills. Went away again. Currently on the 2 pills. Periodically I'll try the 1 pill. But it keeps coming back. This may not b the answer for u but i can lay on both ears ..no pain. It's wonderful. Good luck to u hope u find an answer.

REPLY

I have this problem intermittently. But, massaging a cream behind and on the outer cartilage seems to prevent it. I’m wondering if glasses exacerbate it? Does anyone have the issue who does NOT wear glasses?

REPLY
@colleenyoung

Hi @hippygrandma, welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. While this discussion was started 4 years ago, it is still active. I'm confident that @ellienewfan @nibor63 @lioness @celesteh77 and others will join me in welcoming you. While we wait for the others to join in, I also want to let you know about the fibromyalgia discussions in the Chronic Pain group:
– Feeling at my wits end with Chronic Pain and Fibromyalgia https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/feeling-at-my-with-end-with-chronic-pain-and-fibromyalgia/
– Fibromyalgia https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/fibromyalgia-3/

Hippygrandma, Do you feel that fibro contributes to the outer ear pain? What have you tried to relieve the pain?

Jump to this post

Hello and thank you so much for the warm welcome! I am honored to be part of such a loving, intelligent and thoughtful group.

In regard to your question on whether I feel that fibromyalgia contributes to the outer ear pain, I can only reply with "I have no idea sister" lol! I have many pains and aches that I wonder if they have to do with fibro. As far as what I have tried to do to relieve it, there is not much to do. I keep going from one side to the other, like one of the other ladies in the forum said; I try to put my hand under my cheek. I try to put my hand around my ear, nothing works. I can only imagine that it happens more than I know because I pretty much have to drug myself to sleep because of severe temperature issues and pain from osteoarthritis and osteonecrosis, fibromyalgia, Dercums Disease, etc etc…

I definitely will check out the fibromyalgia link as well thank you so very much I look forward to contributing and learning from you all.

Peace

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@ellienewfan

@hippygrandma. Hi. Just thought I'd give u my experience w the ear pain. Had it since i was in my late 40's. Am now 76. As i got older it became worse. Also have allergies. Also started in late 40 s. Never made connection. Allergies would make me very sick day after flying. Allergist suggested i double up on my allergy pills. Was taking generic once a day. So i did. Could fly again without getting sick. For some reason i kept taking 2 pills. Last fall my left ear no longer hurt at all. A month later the right one stopped hurting. I've thought about it and the only thing different that i did was the allergy pills. BTW the doc said he thought my cartilage behind each ear was inflamed. But he had no cure. I had lots of tests done. No results showing anything wrong. I stopped doubling up on allergy pills. It started to come back. Resumed the two pills. Went away again. Currently on the 2 pills. Periodically I'll try the 1 pill. But it keeps coming back. This may not b the answer for u but i can lay on both ears ..no pain. It's wonderful. Good luck to u hope u find an answer.

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Hello thank you for posting, that's very interesting. I wonder what is in the allergy pills, is there anything in the allergy pills that could be anti inflammatory? I am very happy to hear that you no longer have the pain.

Peace

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@hippygrandma

Hello thank you for posting, that's very interesting. I wonder what is in the allergy pills, is there anything in the allergy pills that could be anti inflammatory? I am very happy to hear that you no longer have the pain.

Peace

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Interesting question. I shall have to research. Will post if i find anything worth noting

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@poco

I have this problem intermittently. But, massaging a cream behind and on the outer cartilage seems to prevent it. I’m wondering if glasses exacerbate it? Does anyone have the issue who does NOT wear glasses?

Jump to this post

Omg. I wear glasses and now remember getting glasses around same time as start of my ear pain. Never considered.. Will ask my allergy dr when i see him.

REPLY
@hippygrandma

I do realize that this post is 4 years old but I had to take a chance and put my input in. I have this issue as well and I am wondering; do any of you that have this issue, have fibromyalgia? I do and I am wondering if this could be that?

Peace

Jump to this post

I’ve been searching on this topic for years! I’ve learned to fall asleep cupping my ear with my hand to help relieve the pressure. But as one does while they sleep, I move and then my ear will inevitably start to hurt. I wake up almost nightly with the pain, hopefully before it gets too bad so i can turn. I’ve gone through countless pillows! I have to lift my head off the pillow at a glacial speed or it hurts even worse. Some days my ear will ache or be sensitive to touch for hours after waking up. I don’t think I have the autoimmune disease discussed as I don’t have any of the other symptoms associated. And I don’t have fibromyalgia. I saw one posts about vitamin C&D. Was wondering about dosage though.

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@mezzsmrs

I’ve been searching on this topic for years! I’ve learned to fall asleep cupping my ear with my hand to help relieve the pressure. But as one does while they sleep, I move and then my ear will inevitably start to hurt. I wake up almost nightly with the pain, hopefully before it gets too bad so i can turn. I’ve gone through countless pillows! I have to lift my head off the pillow at a glacial speed or it hurts even worse. Some days my ear will ache or be sensitive to touch for hours after waking up. I don’t think I have the autoimmune disease discussed as I don’t have any of the other symptoms associated. And I don’t have fibromyalgia. I saw one posts about vitamin C&D. Was wondering about dosage though.

Jump to this post

@mezzsmrs, Have you tried sleeping with a special ear pillow – one with a hole in the middle? I found this article that seems to fit your symptoms.

Agonising ear pain that's easy to cure: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-4509128/Agonising-ear-pain-s-easy-cure.html

REPLY

Mezzsmrs, please try massaging a facial cream on and behind your ears (not in the eardrum, of course!) It works for me – I put it on twice daily, and especially before going to bed. And when the excruciating pain does occur, I immediately massage with the cream – Please let me know if this works for you.

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