Eustachian Tube Dysfunction
(ETD; Barotitis Media; Barotrauma; Ear Popping; Pressure-related Ear Pain)
|Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.|
- Activities with large, rapid altitude changes, such as flying in an airplane or scuba diving
- Allergy, cold, or other upper respiratory infection
- Ear or sinus infection
- Narrow eustachian tube
- Presence of obstructing tumors in the nasopharynx
- Children with large adenoids
- Age: Children (Their eustachian tubes are narrower.)
- Environmental allergies
- Feeling of fullness or clogging in the ear
- Discomfort or pain in the ear
- Hearing loss
- Ringing in the ear (tinnitus)
- Symptoms cannot be relieved by swallowing, yawning, or chewing
- Pain if the blockage results in an infection
- Tympanogram—to measure pressure in the ear canal and movement of the eardrum
- Audiogram—to measure hearing
- Examination of the nose and the back of the nose
- Swallowing, yawning, or chewing gum to relieve the pressure
- Clearing your ears by breathing in and then gently breathing out while holding your nostrils and mouth closed
- Nasal or oral decongestants
- Oral antihistamines
- Nasal steroids to relieve nasal congestion and enable the eustachian tube to open
- Pain medications (eg, acetaminophen or ibuprofen)
- Avoid flying in an airplane or going scuba diving if you have allergies or a cold.
- Use decongestants or antihistamines if you have an allergy or a cold.
- Yawn or chew gum. Encourage swallowing by sucking on hard candy or drinking water.
- When taking off and landing, clear your ears by breathing in and then gently breathing out while holding your nostrils and mouth closed.
- Try special earplugs that slowly equalize the pressure in your ear. These earplugs can be found at drugstores and airports.
American Academy of Family Physicians http://www.aafp.org/
American Hearing Research Foundation http://www.american-hearing.org/
Canadian Academy of Audiology http://www.canadianaudiology.ca/
The Canadian Hearing Society http://www.chs.ca/
American Hearing Research Foundation. Barotrauma. American Hearing Research Foundation website. Available at: http://www.american-hearing.org/disease/barotrauma.html . Updated April 2002. Accessed June 18, 2008.
Mayo Clinic. Airplane ear. Mayo Clinic website. Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.com/invoke.cfm?id=DS00472 . Updated October 2006. Accessed June 18, 2008.
McKinley Health Center. Eustachian tube dysfunction. McKinley Health Center, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign website. Available at: http://www.mckinley.uiuc.edu/handouts/eustachian%5Ftube%5Fdysfunction/eustachian%5Ftube%5Fdysfunction.html . Updated March 2007. Accessed June 18, 2008.
National Cancer Institute. General information about nasopharyngeal cancer. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/cancerinfo/pdq/treatment/nasopharyngeal/patient/#Keypoint3 .
Patient UK. Eustachian tube dysfunction. Patient UK website. Available at: http://www.patient.co.uk/health/Eustachian-Tube-Dysfunction.htm . Updated July 13, 2010. Accessed November 4, 2010.
University Health Services. Eustachian tube dysfunction. University Health Services, University of Wisconsin-Madison website. Available at: http://www.uhs.wisc.edu/display%5Fstory.jsp?id=652&cat%5Fid=38 . Updated May 2007. Accessed June 18, 2008.
- Reviewer: Kari Kassir, MD
- Review Date: 09/2012 -
- Update Date: 00/91/2012 -