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Eustachian Tube Dysfunction?




I have a similar story with an ear injury which at first simply caused me muffled hearing in the morning for 30 seconds each day as if there was fluid in my middle ear (I’m certain there was)… but then I noticed it sort of started to block a little … and not long after I developed MAV.

I wonder if blockage of the Eustachian Tube can cause an upset in the inner ear pressure which can build over time.

Seems like this is an under diagnosed issue, because my pressure tests all came out fine but I know my problem ear has a intermittently blocked ET. Since that blockage and fluid sensation has become more intermittent and less severe, all my dizziness and neurological issues have disappeared. I still get tinnitus though.


I have vague memories of an ENT consultant telling me they’d checked me for Eustacian blockage and it?they? Were all clear. If indeed it is possible to test. I don’t know. I suspect a doctor may have mentioned it in a referral letter. I think maybe your ear accident situation may have been in a strange way a slight advantage in that damage can repair with time until it eventually stabilises to a new normal maybe whereas other possible causes such as fluctuating hormones can continue fluctuating so things remain changing and unstable over a much longer period of time and sensitive brains don’t appreciate uncertainty. I’ve no great theory on this. Just seems it may work that way. Helen


The thing is what i suspect happens is if you get any middle ear damage you get a huge increase in mucosa and an inflammatory response.

I stopped being dizzy and had almost no symptoms after just 5 weeks of severe dizziness and nausea and it just all went!

ONLY TO RETURN 6 months later.

But the fluid sensation that started the day after the injury has abated significantly but only after 3.5 years … bonkers.

The nurse at the local GP did say one thing that was very significant … she said “Ears take an age to heal”. Probably one of the most important things anyone has said to me because the chronic nature (as we all know) is psychologically overwhelming at times this short statement gave me so much hope! And, btw, has proven to be correct! How many doctors have said such useful, insightful things like that? Not many!!

What I think is interesting about all this is that I potentially developed MAV symptoms from middle ear inflammation … this leads me to suspect the inner ear must have some dependency on middle ear function, be it to do with the ET and or the muscles of the middle ear.

There is also the possibility that I whacked the inner ear too and that was also involved … but who knows…


Sounds very negative but it’s not really. People are better with the truth. At lesst that way you knew to wait and didn’t start up in a panic when you weren’t recovered in two weeks. As you say unusual comment. Generally I’ve had no comment at all or a totally negative one. Helen


Yes Helen, exactly. Hope is at least half the battle!


I too have bilateral ear blocking/popping all day every day. A lot of ppl only have it in one ear. Is it common to feel equal fullness in both ears that can be related to migrane?


What we are debating in this Topic is that middle ear blockage may lead to inner ear problems and then from there neurological impact and migraine.

I have no idea if migraine can do the reverse, but there must an underlying mechanism that causes migraines for those people with a root cause in the ear.


Hi. I am sure I have problems with my ears too. I can feel fluid in the left one mostly,and when I blow my nose I can feel it moving!I didn’t know until a while ago that the inner ear has fluid in it?I have had tests done on my ears which says I haven’t got problems with my middle ear. My hearing tests were ok,and the scan I had on my sinus’s was ok, although they failed to scan my ears. I get terrible tinnitus in both ears and have done for years. What is this?R.


I know nothing about Eustachian Tube Dysfunction so went looking and found, to my surprise doctors can supposedly diagnose it by physical examination in their surgery so perhaps it should be easily eliminated that way. Working out links to migraine is obviously a very different thing. Guess that’s why we are still wanting answers. I don’t appear to have any direct ear problems myself. I don’t get clicking, a feeling of fluid, pain, nothing like that but bilateral equal ear ‘fullness’ I do get but this is common with migraine/MAV I understand. I had my ears scanned with my brain by MRI which seems common practice. Sinuses are done independently I suppose if required. Helen


Helen I am not ruling anything out. Not every symptom is a hallucination. I am sure I have fluid in my middle ear and periodically this is worse than at other times. It used to be terrible. ETD was ruled out for me and my otoneuro called the sensations an ‘aberation’. Well it’s an aberration that never occurred before the fateful day so she is absolutely wrong to underplay it.

I am extremely suspicious of and lack confidence in the ‘science’ in this area.

I am certain my ET gets blocked as I can periodically ‘crack’ it open by opening my jaw wide.

I believe these subtle issues add up and have knock on effects.

Remember I’m not the only one who’s had fluid in their ET and ended up with MAV. (@Carriep is another I believe)


Well my ear issues started with a virus which then a few weeks later turned in to dizziness and now 8 mths in with all the other rubbish. Head pressure etc. They must be linked one way or another


Sounds very possible if you ask me!


I trust you didn’t think I thought they were, any of them. People experience and describe sensations differently but that doesn’t mean the symptoms are imaginary. I always think of my tame optician. Talking to him about MAV I once said to him ‘well it must sound ridiculous but sometimes it feels as if my two eyes are working independently’ and he said ‘in that case it’s most probably because they are!’. If that’s what it feels like, could most likely be that’s what it is. If it sounds like fluid sloshing, it probably is. Helen


I’ve also just looked up ETD and it describes all the symptoms I get when my ears play up! The last time I saw Dr S I described my ear symptoms and he just said it sounds like you have a Eustachian tube problem but I didn’t investigate. As it comes and goes I am not so sure and instead think my ears play up when i have eaten too many things I shouldn’t. For example i have noticed that if I eat ham and bacon - which i have been avoiding mainly - the ear pressure comes back. Ditto if I have too much tuna in one week and I think eating an avocado affected my ears the other day too. Having had a tuna sandwich for lunch my ears have just got worse - they were relatively fine this morning. Oh well that’s this week’s theory anyway!

James @turnitaround I would like to support this site by buying something from Amazon - would it be possible to add this to the list as it is on my swimming wish list and I will be buying it anyway:

(NB from admin: these images link to products members have found helpful and at the same time help fund the site: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. More recommended products here. Thanks for your support!)

“Ear Band-it”
More health accessories here

I am trying to protect my perforated ear and I am having trouble with the ear plugs! :joy:
Jan x


Jan just by clicking on that link right now and purchasing it it will credit the site. However I will make it pretty as with others for the benefit of other members. Thank you very much for your consideration.

Yes I get impact from food too. My ear used to pulsate after eating certain foods. On a particularly bad evening after say , pasta, cheese and red wine it would get very loud. It’s got less extreme over time but still never shuts up lol, though easier to ignore.

When I raised it with my doctor he told me that many people with Secondary Hydrops find that reducing cheese and wine helps lessen symptoms. So, the MAV diet then?!

I’m very suspicious that for some people there is a link between ETD and inner ear dysfunction and that that leads to migraine.

There may also be migraine sufferers that end up with excess mucus, but there is surely a root cause for their migraine?


I fancy @janb is a six C’s dieter already. I do wonder about ‘ears’. Certainly not a cure, and it’s always feasible there exists another extant ear problem for some, but would it be worth trying a Menieres diet, assuming there are such things in existence. Low sodium and whatever. Just to see if it helped. I don’t suffer with ears but much reduced caffeine certsinly seemed to noticeably reduce my rear head pressure on a day to day basis and even during recent attacks. Worth a try? Helen


Thanks James - I shall be buying the swim band it in the next few days.

Before I succumbed to the full blown symptoms of MAV my left ear would pulsate after eating and drinking red wine - it was doing that for quite a few years but I didn’t realise why then. I do now!

As Helen @Onandon03 has mentioned I am doing the 6 Cs diet already so no wine, cheese, citrus , Chinese food etc but I think I should try to cut down on salt too as my ears definitely played up after I had the ham, tuna and bacon in the same week. Plus I think I am inadvertently ingesting MSG without realising - I didn’t know that MSG could be in granola for instance!
I think I shall re-read HYH - and do a bit more research into ETD and maybe ask for an ENT referral as Dr S suggested.
Jan x


It’s definitely worth it in your case Jan because of the perforation. That can’t be healthy for your middle ear in the long term?

Normally I’d recommend being conservative but it’s probably a very simple procedure to get that fixed.


As are we all I suspect. Apparently I read it’s virtually impossible to avoid MSG (Oxos actually have added MSG to that which occurs naturally) but if careful it’s possible to reduce intake quite a lot. i’ve seen actual MSG reduction diets somewhere on the internet. Personally I’ve found lowering an already low salt diet still further beneficial with pressure. Helen