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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Why does my ear feel full?

    I had tonsillitis and and ear infection last year and ever since then my ear has been full and I feel unbalanced all the time. One doctor said its because my tonsils are permanently large, that it's blocking the tube to drain fluid from my ear. How can I fix it?
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • Raji Parangad

    Audiologist

    No referrals required. Cosmetic hearing aid specialist ( we have the latest, most discreet hearing aids in the market), Custom ear plugs, Assertive listening devices. … View Profile

    Fist of all I am assuming you have seen an ENT specialsit. If no then you shoud be doing that to rule out any structural issues. You should also consider getting a Diagnostic Audiogram done. This will rule out any asymmetry in hearing as well as the cause of any hearing loss if any...

  • Kathryn Penno

    Audiologist

    Hello and Welcome, I founded the Hearing Collective to give clients one location, a collective of hearing healthcare services that are convenient and accessible. Hearing … View Profile

    The tube the doctor is referring to is called the Eustachian tube. This tube is part of the middle ear system of the peripheral hearing pathways.

    The pathways are:

    1. Pinna (ear flap) and outer ear canal. This system funnels sound waves into the ear canal to the tympanic membrane (ear drum).

    2. Middle ear system; which contains the ossicles, the 3 smallest bones in your body; and your Eustachian tube. This tube leads to your nose and throat, hence Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) speciality. This system amplifies the sound waves along the bones to the inner ear, cochlea (hearing organ).

    3. Inner ear; which contains your hearing and balance system all leading to the nerves which lead to the brain.

     

    In your case, #2 is what sounds like is causing your hearing and fullness concerns, however the imbalance would relate to #3, in particular the balance portion of the inner ear. I would recommend an audiogram (hearing test) and tympanometry (test of the middle ear system) to help with diagnosis and management of your concerns. An ENT can provide medical opinion and management as your symptoms all lead to this specialist. 

    REgarding the imbalance: A balance test would only be recommended after questions by your GP or ENT are covered as they would order the test (done by a vestibular audiologist or neuro-vestibular physiotherapist).

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