I found this group while googling information on acoustic neuromas and have found the posts to be very helpful.
A few weeks ago I noticed that my left ear felt clogged and since I have had a history of wax buildup (I've been told I have small ear canals, haha) I went to urgent care to see if they needed to be flushed. They did not and I was given Mucinex, A week after that I still felt the plugged up feeling and the ear would not get better no matter how many times I would pop my ears by holding my nose. Went back to a different urgent care and was diagnosed with an outer and middle ear infection (the dr said my out ear was very red) and given antibiotics and some ear drops and told to follow up with an ENT if it wasn't getting better.
I realized I had ringing in that ear so last week I saw an ENT who did a hearing test and told me I have mild hearing loss in my left ear. The high frequency sounds, I believe he said. He put me on Prednisolone twice a day and I will be back there tomorrow for my one week follow up. He explained what an acoustic neuroma is and that I'd need an MRI with contrast, however I told him I was breastfeeding my 5 month old and he said it could wait until I was done (even if it is a year from now) as these things are slow growing. I didn't even know I had hearing loss but I now realize that I do have some slight difficulty hearing people in crowded situations like a restaurant or whatever.
I am currently not taking a HUGE dose of the steroid because of my anxiety. I suffer from debilitating anxiety that went out of control after the birth of my first child 2 years ago and came roaring back after the second 5 months ago. I am currently taking 25ml of Sertraline for this. So the ENT out me on a lower dose of the steroids due to the affect on anxiety they can have. I do feel the anxiety gets MUCH worse about 20 minutes after I take it, though I don't know if it's a direct cause or my overall mental health right now in dealing with this issue.
Anyway, I am TERRIFIED of going for the MRI. It's not necessarily the claustrophobia feelings (I have had two before, though neither was with contrast, so I will probably opt to take some kind of sedative or something) but the fear of the OUTCOME. What I mean is, I am terrified of it being something other than an acoustic neuroma, if that makes sense. I do not know how I will be able to stand the wait to find out what is going on. I have had a few full-on panic attacks this week thinking about cancer (I know ANs are not cancer, but I take things and run with them and go down the rabbit hole.) My mother died of cancer 10 years ago when I was still in my 20s and I was her caretaker. I have PTSD from this, so I have a really hard time with doctors and scans and even simple blood tests.
Has anyone experienced similar feelings? Am I working myself up too much? How do you get through it? I know the ENT said I could wait for an MRI and it's not urgent but I don't know if I can wait that long.