The eustachian tube (eustachian tube) runs between the ears and the throat. This channel maintains the stability and balance of air pressure in the ears. Blockage of the Eustachian tubes, causes a change in air pressure in the ears. The blockage causes mucus from the cold to collect, causing ear pain and impaired hearing.
A rapid change in air pressure can cause the eustachian tubes to become blocked. This may happen when the plane's altitude changes or when the diver rises or falls underwater.
More than 1 million people worldwide have a eustachian tube obstruction. Eustachian tube obstruction often resolves on its own or after treatment with antibiotics. But if the eustachian tube is still blocked, surgery may be needed.
Who is most likely to have a blocked Eustachian tube?
People who smoke are at increased risk of eustachian tube blockage because smoking damages the cilia — tiny hairs that line the middle ear and help clear mucus toward the throat.
People who are obese are also at greater risk of developing duct obstruction due to fatty deposits that can form around the eustachian tubes, leading to duct obstruction.
Allergies and chronic sinusitis are also risk factors because they cause obstruction of the duct, where the mucous tissues in the duct swell due to allergies and thus obstruct the passage of mucus into the throat.
Nasal polyps, cleft palate, or a tumor may increase the risk of eustachian tube obstruction by up to 80%. There is no increased risk of eustachian tube obstruction based on gender or ethnicity.
What are the complications of eustachian tube obstruction?
In severe cases, blockage of the Eustachian tube may lead to:
- Chronic otitis media.
- Otitis media with effusion, or "sticky ear," is a buildup of fluid in the middle ear that can last for weeks and can damage hearing.
- Retraction of the eardrum, when it appears that the eardrum is being sucked further into the auditory canal.
Most cases of eustachian tube dysfunction and obstruction resolve within a few days with the help of over-the-counter medications and home remedies, but symptoms can last one to two weeks. If your symptoms last longer, get worse, or seem to recur, you should see a doctor.
What are the symptoms of eustachian tube obstruction?
A buildup of mucus in the ear causes symptoms, which are often mild and limited to a few days due to a cold or the flu. If it persists for more than two weeks, recurs frequently, or is severe, see a specialist. We mention some of them:
- clogged or full ears
- Itching - pain - ringing or crackling in the ear
- Balance problem may occur
- The sound is muffled
How is Eustachian tube obstruction diagnosed in Turkey?
Your doctor will ask how you feel and will carefully examine your ear canals, tympanic membrane, nose and throat for signs of inflammation and mucus buildup. A recent infection with the flu, a cold, or a sinus infection is often enough to diagnose a eustachian tube obstruction.
If symptoms persist, recur, or worsen, your doctor may want to check for other problems that may lead to pain, ear fullness, and hearing changes. Tests may include:
Closing the nose and mouth and sometimes trying to exhale through the nose can help relieve a blocked duct if the problem is caused by a change in air pressure.
This test measures hearing abilities. You will hear sounds sent by the audiologist and press a button to indicate when you hear something that the audiologist determines how blockage in the eustachian tube affects hearing.
tympanic membrane movement layout:
This procedure measures pressure behind the tympanic membrane by inserting a manometer probe into the auditory canal. The device generates different pressures and pure tone, and measures the responses of the drum to sound at different pressures.
This involves inserting a small, flexible camera into the nose, so that the doctor can see the openings of the duct.
X-rays can provide a detailed look at the inner and middle ear.
Depending on the results of the evaluations above — or if the condition persists for more than three months and conservative treatment fails — your doctor may recommend a eustachian tube dilation.
What is the treatment of eustachian tube obstruction in Turkey?
Ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialists offer a wide range of Eustachian tube obstruction treatment options depending on the cause of the blockage. Methods for treating blockages range from decongestants to surgery. Team Bimaristan Medical It helps you to select an appropriate treatment method for each individual patient, and the most effective one that will provide a successful outcome in the long term.
Treating allergies and nasal congestion:
Determining the cause and treatment of nasal allergies may help reduce swelling in the eustachian tube. There are a number of different ways we can treat allergies, and we'll discuss the options together:
- Determine the causes of allergies and stay away from them.
- Use of intranasal anti-inflammatories to reduce inflammation of the eustachian tube mucosa. We recommend trying anti-inflammatories for two weeks to see if the medication helps.
- Decongestants, which help open a blocked eustachian tube by reducing swelling of the nasal lining. These medicines work immediately and can be taken as needed.
Nasal sprays work well in treating nasal congestion and clear it up directly. However, because the body quickly gets used to the medication, it should not be used for more than three consecutive days only.
Antihistamines reduce the body's inflammatory response to allergens. These medications may be beneficial for some patients and can be taken as needed.
Eustachian tube obstruction with the Valsva maneuver:
Closing your nose and "popping" your ear may be an effective way to relieve a blocked Eustachian tube. The air opens the eustachian tubes and relieves the symptoms of obstruction. You can also achieve the same result when blowing up balloons. Usually, the pressure required to inflate the balloons is enough to push the air into the eustachian tube and relieve symptoms of obstruction.
This technique is very useful in the treatment of eustachian tube obstruction and can be repeated as often as needed.
Don't do this when you have a cold or a cold, as it may push mucus and bacteria into the middle ear and cause an infection.
Surgical treatment of eustachian tube obstruction:
The primary goal of surgical treatment is to bypass the role of the Eustachian tube by ventilating the middle ear. Surgery can restore hearing, relieve a feeling of heaviness in the ear, and reduce the possibility of middle ear infection.
Types of surgery include:
We make a small incision in the tympanic membrane and suction any fluid in the middle ear. In adults, the incision often remains open long enough to allow swelling in the lining of the Eustachian tube to ease. After the eardrum has healed (usually within one to three days), fluid in the middle ear may begin to build up again if the lining of the Eustachian tube does not heal. If it does not heal, we may resort totympanoplasty.
During this procedure we will:
An incision in the tympanic membrane and absorption of any fluid in the middle ear
A small hollow tube made of plastic or metal will be inserted into the tympanic membrane.
Over time, the tube is pushed out while the tympanic membrane heals. The interest may last for six to 12 months. Oftentimes, the eustachian tube has recovered by this time, and the tubes will not need to be replaced. However, if you have a chronic condition, we can use long lasting tubes.
For adults, the procedure takes about five minutes and can be performed in the clinic using a local anesthetic. For children, we will use a light general anesthetic.
How is the ventilator tubes used to treat Eustachian tube obstruction taken care of?
It is important to keep water out of your ears; this means:
- Earplugs or a cotton ball dipped in Vaseline should be used while showering.
- Wear earplugs that fit your ear when you go swimming.
Water entering the auditory canal can carry bacteria through the tube into the middle ear and cause inflammation. This is called purulent drainage (white, green or yellow pus) from the ear. We treat this type of infection with antibiotic drops.
The other risk of tympanoplasty or ventilation is that the incision may not heal. This may eventually require surgery (tympanoplasty) to close the hole.
Eustachian tube balloon:
Eustachian tube balloon is the latest method for treating duct obstruction, and this technique is now available in Turkey. This balloon helps restore duct function and relieve symptoms of obstruction.
The Xpress™ ENT Dilation System provides safe, effective, and minimally invasive treatment for people with obstructed Eustachian tubes.
During this procedure, your doctor will insert a small balloon through your nose into the eustachian tube. Then the balloon is gently inflated, and after treatment and expansion of the duct and removal of the purulent fluid, if any, the balloon is removed. The operation is performed under the influence of local anesthesia.
What is the relationship of eustachian tube obstruction and flight?
Individuals with eustachian tube obstruction may have difficulty balancing the pressures in the middle ear when flying.
When traveling by plane, the ears are subject to large fluctuations in atmospheric pressure. Because when an aircraft ascends, the cabin air pressure drops and a relative positive pressure builds up in the middle ears. For most people, this pressure is easily relieved via the Eustachian tube.
Thus, the pressures of the middle ear with cabin air equilibrate on both sides of the tympanic membrane (about 6000 feet above sea level).
Equalizing the pressure during the descent is more difficult. The cabin air pressure increases gradually when descending. Thus, relative negative pressure develops in the middle ear that leads to obstruction of the Eustachian tube. In these cases, yawning, swallowing, chewing gum, or trying to "pop" the ears helps the eustachian tubes open at some point. Most adults can fly without difficulty unless they have an illness that has temporarily swollen the lining of the Eustachian tube and narrows its passage. Some adults have a very mild blockage of the Eustachian tube and only develop symptoms when flying.
Prevention of Eustachian tube obstruction during flight:
The eustachian tube usually closes only when you swallow or yawn. Get gum, hard candy, or liquid emollients to help with frequent swallowing while the plane is landing. Do not sleep during the last part of the flight because you will wake up with earache and blockage in the Eustachian tube.
Decongestants help reduce swelling in the lining of the Eustachian tube. These medicines should be taken so that their maximum effectiveness is within the last hour of the flight. In general, oral decongestants should be taken 2 to 3 hours before expected arrival time while nasal sprays should be used approximately 1 hour prior to arrival.
Avoid flying when you have a cold, flu, or allergic rhinitis.
The vent tube helps the eustachian tube to balance pressure in the ear, although the risks of ear infection and perforation of the eardrum must be weighed against this benefit.
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Common questions and answers about Eustachian tube obstruction and its treatment in Turkey
Is eustachian tube obstruction dangerous?
A blockage of the Eustachian tube may indicate a serious problem, such as a tumor in the nasopharynx, so if the symptoms of obstruction of the tube persist for more than a month, refer to the doctor.
Eustachian tube obstruction and headache
Headaches are caused by blockage of the Eustachian tube and relieved with treatment.
Is blockage of the Eustachian tube cause dizziness?
Yes, it is caused by obstruction of the Eustachian tube, dizziness and vertigo.
What are the symptoms of chronic eustachian tube obstruction?
Ear blockage, dizziness and lightheadedness, itching - pain - ringing in the ears are the most important symptoms of eustachian tube obstruction and ear infection.
How effective is the Eustachian tube in the treatment of duct obstruction?
indicate Studies The satisfaction rate for patients with eustachian tube obstruction after this procedure is about 82%, and it is a suitable procedure for children with eustachian tube obstruction.