I’m a 61 year old man who has been reading a lot here since my problems began late last year. I started having tinnitus in my right ear around Thanksgiving and made an appointment to see my PCP. By the time I was seen in March my symptoms had progressed to include a sensation of fullness in the right ear, along with a daily minor earache. I was given two courses of antibiotics with no improvement.
My symptoms continued to worsen, and now I have stabbing ear pain and headaches most of the day, every day. I’ve also had significant fatigue (maybe from disturbed sleep), transient minor unsteadiness, and periods where I feel a lot of pain when I swallow. It’s not like a typical raw, sore throat. I haven’t seen that mentioned as a symptom, so I don’t know what that is.
My doctor has seemed to minimize my problems and I’ve had to pester him because something is definitely wrong. He finally agreed to an ENT consult, but that doctor basically said “you’re fine” and dismissed me. I was able to self refer for an audiology test but I don’t know how to interpret the results. The report says, “In R ear pure tone testing indicates normal hearing loss through 1000 Hz sloping to a mild to moderate sensorineural hearing loss.” I also did a battery of vestibular function tests which were mostly normal, only some mild problems.
After all this I have an MRI scheduled on Oct 28th. The order says “MRI circle of Willis to evaluate causes of unilateral pulsatile tinnitus.”
I’m curious what others might glean from this. I’ve read a lot about ANs and differential diagnoses and the AN tag seems to fit. I’m just grateful for having an MRI scheduled. It might turn out I’m a hypochondriac like my doctor seems to believe, but I hope not.
Thanks for listening, and any advice you might have.