Found a solution to my ear pain

Posted by emacsass @emacsass, Jun 7 7:50pm

Along with progressive normal deafness (I'm 87) , sometimes I would develop a painful earache, in my right ear, the side that I usually sleep on. At first, I treated it with heat, and it would go away. I suspected an infection, but the rapid decrease in the pain made me think otherwise. My answer: my right ear seems to be sensitive to just the right kind of pressure. So now when I recline on my right side, I make sure the pillow is smoothed out first –no little wrinkles to trigger the pain. It still happens, rarely, and I merely turn over to my left side for a while.

Ah, glad you found a solution to the problem…sore ear/s are no fun, take care. J.

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If the problem returns, you really should see your primary care provider, and possibly an ENT.

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Glad you were able to find a solution to this problem. The outer ear is mainly composed of cartilage. Pain can occur if it's irritated. I believe this is called auricular chondritis. Like other areas of the body that have cartilage, it can become irritated for a variety of reasons. It sounds as if pressure from your pillow was the culprit.

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@julieo4

Glad you were able to find a solution to this problem. The outer ear is mainly composed of cartilage. Pain can occur if it's irritated. I believe this is called auricular chondritis. Like other areas of the body that have cartilage, it can become irritated for a variety of reasons. It sounds as if pressure from your pillow was the culprit.

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Thanks. Now I have a diagnosis. I never liked gristle on meat, but now I see that I wear some all the time!

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@emacsass

Thanks. Now I have a diagnosis. I never liked gristle on meat, but now I see that I wear some all the time!

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LOL! Yep…we have both meat and gristle within us! 🙂

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I have read many of the questions regarding outer ear pain. I’ve suffered for at least 5 years with this. I’ve been blown off by doctors saying there’s nothing they can do. I’m frustrated. When I tell people they laugh saying it’s water in the ear or yeast infection, etc.
My pain starts the minute I lean back even in my recliner. Ear turns red and pain starts. If I sit up I get relieved rather quickly.

I do get relief when I use my husband’s prescription steroid cream. I know I shouldn’t so I only put it on if I’m in such pain I can’t get to sleep. By the way I’m on morphine for chronic pain and it has no effect on this issue.

I pray that someday a doctor will care enough to look into this issue. Seems trivial to many but not for us sufferers.

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@ocbette

I have read many of the questions regarding outer ear pain. I’ve suffered for at least 5 years with this. I’ve been blown off by doctors saying there’s nothing they can do. I’m frustrated. When I tell people they laugh saying it’s water in the ear or yeast infection, etc.
My pain starts the minute I lean back even in my recliner. Ear turns red and pain starts. If I sit up I get relieved rather quickly.

I do get relief when I use my husband’s prescription steroid cream. I know I shouldn’t so I only put it on if I’m in such pain I can’t get to sleep. By the way I’m on morphine for chronic pain and it has no effect on this issue.

I pray that someday a doctor will care enough to look into this issue. Seems trivial to many but not for us sufferers.

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Hello @ocbette, Welcome to Connect. You mentioned doctors have blown you off saying there is nothing they can do. It sounds very similar to the symptoms of Swimmer's Ear which can also be caused if the thin layer of skin in the ear canal is damaged — Swimmer's ear – Symptoms & causes: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/swimmers-ear/symptoms-causes/syc-20351682

Have you thought about seeing an Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist?

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@johnbishop

Hello @ocbette, Welcome to Connect. You mentioned doctors have blown you off saying there is nothing they can do. It sounds very similar to the symptoms of Swimmer's Ear which can also be caused if the thin layer of skin in the ear canal is damaged — Swimmer's ear – Symptoms & causes: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/swimmers-ear/symptoms-causes/syc-20351682

Have you thought about seeing an Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist?

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I have seen a primary Kaiser doctor and amazingly enough she had the same disorder. She checked me out and announced my ears to be fine with no visual problems. She tried to set me up with a Kaiser ENT and before I could leave the office he wrote back and said no. There was nothing he could do for me. We both were shocked and disappointed.

Second time was my normal primary doctor who read my last complaint and admitted she never heard of such a thing. Again, she announced my ears looked normal and healthy.
Thanks for writing back, I appreciate it but swimmers ear is out.

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@ocbette

I have seen a primary Kaiser doctor and amazingly enough she had the same disorder. She checked me out and announced my ears to be fine with no visual problems. She tried to set me up with a Kaiser ENT and before I could leave the office he wrote back and said no. There was nothing he could do for me. We both were shocked and disappointed.

Second time was my normal primary doctor who read my last complaint and admitted she never heard of such a thing. Again, she announced my ears looked normal and healthy.
Thanks for writing back, I appreciate it but swimmers ear is out.

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I have the same thing! The ENT said my hearing was excellent and nothing was wrong. It wasn’t long after that a whole new onslaught of unknown issues that the doctors can’t figure out started. Thanks for sharing!!

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I'm repeating myself here, but if it's the outer ear that is painful, there may be a diagnosis for it. Here is what I shared earlier this summer: "The outer ear is mainly composed of cartilage. Pain can occur if it's irritated. I believe this is called auricular chondritis. Like other areas of the body that have cartilage, it can become irritated for a variety of reasons." Much depends on where the pain originates. I hope you find help for this. Doctors should never brush us off, but it does happen. 🙁

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