Looking for help with garbled hearing and voice

Posted by mtheophilus @mtheophilus, Apr 20 11:41am

I'm a media producer. Late Dec 2022, I noticed a bit of cognitive ability loss. There were no precipitating events. No illness and there have been no other symptoms (no headaches, equilibrium problem, nothing else).

On Jan 27, 2023 woke up with growly voice and totally garble music. Neither ear would pop. Folks sounded like Donald Duck. Couldn't discern between female and male voices or music genre.

Feb 7 PCP thought possible inner ear infection. Was first to prescribe antibiotics, but went with 12 day steroid prescription. Due to some miscommunication only 6 day steroid prescription received, briefly better, then after a few days worse again. Renewal delayed for 2 weeks (another miscommunication with PCP staff).
Then as I began second steroid set, I was hospitalized with a fast heart (148 that couldn't be slowed) and received a successful Cardiac Ablation March 6th. Steroids stopped.

There was some hearing improvement. In fact, on March 13 and March 27th my hearing returned perfectly for 2 to 3 hours first thing in the morning before regressing.

Mid range frequency spectrum has made it impossible to listen, much less edit projects, so I've had to stop editing audio and video projects as I don't trust my reference. Requested referral to ENT from PCP.

March 22nd ENT said maybe eustachian tube. He recommended I take Astro nose drops twice a day and pop my ears 8 times a day and it would clear up in 6 weeks. No change after 5 weeks.

April 19 Went for second opinion with top area ENT doctor. He said probably not eustachian tube. Test showed significant change in low frequency in left ear from when my hearing aids were prescribed 2 years ago. He could not understand why I was hearing high and low frequencies and the mid range was garbled. Music continues to be unbearably bad. Yesterday, ENT began 4 shot sequence of steroids to my left Cochlea, however is not optimistic of results.

I don't understand the connection between the garbled music range and my growly voice. No one has been able to explain the connection. My voice and hearing distortion grows worse and slightly better in tandem. TV news casts, movies and conversations are a challenge and I'm guessing at content and frustrated with the cognitive impact.

Any suggestions/recommendations appreciated. Thanks!

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Hope you receive many comments/advice as, along with tinnitus and hyperacusis, I have similar but not all symptoms as you with garbled voices. It's horrible – not life threatening but life altering. J.

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