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Ear pain after radiotherapy
I finished a course of RT six weeks ago. I've had all the usual problems but now I'm really suffering with ear pain. It started on the left side where the RT was done but now both affects both ears. It is excruiating. GP has given me ear drops but says the ears are clear.
Any one else suffered with this? Is it an RT side effect?
Posts: 1 | Location: Newbury, Berkshire | Registered: 31 December 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Chelle
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Steve as a result of R/T i now have granulated skin around my ear drum. So i'm constantly getting ear infections and ear problems combined with the tinnitus from chemo!
& i never had ear problems before.
I'm regularily on ear drops and find the steroid type relieves irritation in a few days.
If your doctor cant sort it then urge a refferal to a ENT specialist..

-~*Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds*~-
...Albert Einstein
Posts: 801 | Location: Hastings, UK | Registered: 01 March 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Steve,
It's early days still. I had a lot of ear discomfort,tinnitus and balance problems after RT. Things cleared up a lot after a couple of months. The side effects can be weird but nothing is really fully explained till it actually happens to you. Hopefully it will clear up for you. Ear pain can be very excrutiating.
Good luck - Tony K
Posts: 294 | Location: leicester | Registered: 25 May 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Trev
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Hi! Steve,
I had 33 RT and 7weeks of Chemo, during this treatment I was constantly aplying Sorbelene cream to the treatment areas and even now 16weeks after the treatment finished I still occasional apply the cream, however I have been finding my ear(right) is showing a dryness feel and I have wondered why at times I seem to lose my balance but I don't have any pain in my ear and if memory serves me pain in the ear was a REAL pain in the arse Thinking Banghead.
Take care and keep in touch, And have a Happy New Year.
Posts: 393 | Location: Willaston Sth Australia Australia | Registered: 09 July 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'm jumping on the band wagon here. I get ear pain and it's pure hell. It feels like a red hot darning needle being pushed in just behind my lower ear lobe. The pain doc says it's nerve damage. Might clear up might not!
I'm on a high dose of nuerontin and MST but still sometimes get breakthrough pain. When it gets so bad I want to chop my head off I have to revert to the oramorph on top of everything else.
Would you believe that this week at college I've been studying cell reproduction. Guess what, the only cells that don't split and repair themselves are nerve cells. Isn't that just bloody great. It's a case of hoping the nerve end eventually dies and stops causing pain or having to live with it! Bomb
Sorry I have no easy answer.
Hey Tev, I'd love to walk down the street with you. I get the wobblies too. My inner ear takes mad fits, so my balance goes of the scale. We'd look a real pair!
Posts: 226 | Location: Cork, Ireland | Registered: 20 December 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Like Tony I also had a lot of ear pain aand seemed to be forever having drops in the first year. As the years have gone on I seem now down to ear drops for an infection about once a year. My ears were also very dry, but at last 5 years on I think a little wax has returned. It's all a long slow job.
Posts: 525 | Location: United Kingdom | Registered: 10 June 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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i thought iwas going crazy. i finished my radition and chemo in aug have ear oain that is unreal. went to ent in nov and every thing looked good. now in jan14th he found a nodular on my vocal cord has any one else had this moved my pet scan up a month.i had stage1t1a vocal cord cancer on right one left all clear please help
i hope its not back
Posts: 9 | Location: kansas | Registered: 22 January 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Susan (and Stephen)
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leity43 - I hope you have good news from your scan....


Just in case this is helpful to you: My husband's ears have been quite a bother since completing RT (19 Nov 07) -- at first just "stuffy" and then intermittent pain in left ear (the side that received strongest rays). In his case, his doctor said the Eustachian tubes are swollen/narrowed and possibly scarred from the radiation, but this is expected to get better with time, and that is starting to happen very gradually. He feels some movement of his eardrums now (finally starting to "open up" a bit), and the pain is less.

All the best with your healing. (I encourage you to keep asking your doctor about it for more information if pain persists.)

Posts: 34 | Location: USA | Registered: 10 January 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi! Leity43
I don't know if this is of any help but my right ear (which is the side of the most RT) was rather painful for a few weeks after RT but went away quickly except for the numbness and poor hearing that side (I didn't think much of it as I am partially deaf in both ears) and have since been thinking that I have been a bit wobbly at times and occasionaly loose my footing, my right ear is also still numb and my treatment finished Sept 2007, I find it is always an excuse to not hear what has been said and I make sure Deb is on my right hand side when I don't want to hear her(JOKE Joyce).
All the best with your hearing.
Posts: 393 | Location: Willaston Sth Australia Australia | Registered: 09 July 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Oh I am so glad I found this site. I am 3 months out of throat radiation. 6 weeks ago my ears began to ache - I mean stabbing fierce pain mostly in my right ear but often in both. My surgeon is a bit of a doom and gloom type of person. He is sending me to a specialist to figure out the ear thing. A recent CT and scope show no signs of cancer (whew!)I couldnt find anything on line referring to this side effect. I almost feel better knowing that other people are going through the same awful pain and its not my imagination or worse, the return of cancer. Can anyone tell me how long this ear pain lasted? This is really a huge interference with getting my life back. Sheila
Posts: 1 | Location: massachusetts | Registered: 05 June 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Dr Vinod K Joshi
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Hello girlcat and all

The pain in the ear may not be anything to do with the ear. Often the pains in the area of the ear and side of face are TMD Myofascial pains which are misdiagnosed. See: Oncologic stress: Its causality in myofascial pain disorder or in temporomandibular disorder . My advice on this can be found here. You may also find past discussions about ear pain helpful. Hope that helps.

Best wishes
Vinod Coffee

Disclaimer: Please see your own dentist/doctor for a proper diagnosis as my words should not, in any circumstances, be taken as dental/medical advice.

"If you see what is small as it sees itself, and accept what is weak for what strength it has, and use what is dim for the light it gives, then all will go well. This is called Acting Naturally."
Lao-Tsu, Tao Teh King
Posts: 4013 | Location: St Luke's Hospital, Bradford and Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield | Registered: 14 December 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thank you, Vinod. I do not hve TMJ(went to an oral surgeon--he said no),but I do grind my teeth. Myofascial pain--is that muscle pain?
My ENT believes the earache is from allergies, and it did go away after taking claritin and astelin. Now two months later it is back, and I am still taking the allergy meds. Perhaps the pollen in my area hs become worse?

Tonsil cancer stage II, Radition and chemo completed 6/06/07
Posts: 6 | Location: massachusetts | Registered: 14 June 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Girlcat et al

I suffered terrible ear pain as well--it felt like someone had thrust a knitting needle or letter opener in my left ear, giving it the occasional whack. It was finally determined to be referred pain from the tumor on my tongue. The whole idea of "referred pain" is pretty strange, but when it comes to your head, it kind of makes sense. Everything is so close together that signals are bound to get confused. For me, the pain finally stopped after a hemiglossectomy and resection. I pray for you that the doctors don't have to go to such extremes.


Howdilly doodilly, survivorinos!
Posts: 1040 | Location: Hollywood on the Huron | Registered: 15 February 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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