Stapedectomy - day 4

Hi everyone,

New on this community.

Just want to tell you about my experiences with otosclerosis and stapedectomy.

I got diagnosed while pregnant with my fourth child. I was 38 years old. I got hearing aids at that time as they couldn't operate while I was pregnant/breastfeeding and was told to come back a year later. A year later came and the ENT told me I wasn't eligible for a stapedectomy. That day I was very sad... Having to accept hearing aids for the rest of my life at age 39.

My hearing deteriorated very quickly and I needed hearing aids on both ears. Now at 42 might right ear was almost deaf - 70-90% gone and the left a little better with around 60% gone. Even with hearing aids life started to be difficult. I am a very outgoing person, working, meetings, socialising with lots of people around me and music, restaurants etc.

I decided to seek a second opinion and I am very glad I did. This ENT was willing to operate on my right ear - although telling me I might still need a hearing aid as there are also some senso-nerological loss that he can't make up for. He reckons he could bring it back to around 35% loss instead of the 75-90% loss. There would be so much more to work with even though i'd still wear a hearing aid.

So I have just had the stapedectomy on my right ear four days ago. I can't tell you how successful it has been just yet - time will tell. I didn't have much to lose on that ear so I wasn't nervous at all.

The recovery has been pretty awful though. Don't underestimate the dizziness. Hangovers from hell or being absolutely sea sick for days. Slowly getting better today on day four but have still had to lie down because the room was spinning.

Coming out of anaesthetics was pretty awful too. I was in a lot of pain and very nauseated for a few hours. I was curled up in a little ball crying (and I don't consider myself a whimp) - but they got it under control with Tramadols and Oxycodein.

That said, I was pain free the very next day and have only needed a couple of paracetamols. I am also taking antibiotics to prevent any infection.

My ear is full of cotton and packing, and the ear itself is swollen inside, so I can't hear anything yet. Except I noticed an aeroplane above me and I felt my 'bad' ear vibrating!! So exciting! The packing is due to come out in another 4 days and I am told hearing will slowly improve over the next 2 months.

I am full of hope - but I am so over being se sick! :)

3 Replies

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  • Hi. Best of luck. Keep us updated on how you're getting on.

    Missy

  • I envy you, as I frequently do of people that have somehow managed to get a diagnosis let alone anything more than hearing aids from audiologists;

    1985, 34 years old: I woke up on the floor of a Tesco car park, I had not been it by a car but my, then, husband, had no idea what he did but my head was all shapes and a lot bigger. that day the Tinnitus started, along with the struggles of deafness which were eased a little at 45, with hearing aids, now in my mid 60s, I am R/profound and L/severe and have no hearing without the aids.

    No audiologist has ever offered me anything but hearing aids, there has never been any investigation into the reason/damage, nor has there ever been any diagnosis, prognosis or offered anything other than plug and play, go home.

    Every time I read somebody's experience, it is rare that they do not have a diagnosis at least, often know their deafness level losses and can relate them in full technical language, sometimes lucky enough to have surgery as a choice.

    Can somebody explain the difference between audiologist/patients?, it wont be age as I was in my mid 30s, I was working and raising a child, so could not have been deemed socially useless.

  • Hi,

    First I am so sorry about your experiences.

    You say the audiologist has only offered you hearing aids... It is my understanding that is what audiologists do. They are not ENT's and they do not diagnose WHY or HOW you got that hearing loss. Neither are they surgeons and cannot suggest operations that can possibly alleviate a hearing loss or tinnitus. But they can help with hearing tests, and all sorts of aids that can make life better and at least bearable as opposed to having no aids.

    ENT's can give you the WHY's and HOW's and mostly also surgeons if an operation will be beneficial. They are the ones that can give you a diagnosis and a prognosis.

    If you haven't seen an ENT I suggest you go see one straight away. And nothing wrong with seeing a second one just to make sure they all agree :) For me it is also important it is someone I feel I can get along with as I am likely to have a lifelong relationship with this doctor. My hearing is never going to be perfect and I will need to feel I am able to go back and discuss issues as they occur.

    Same with my audiologist - it's likely to be a lifelong relationship - so might as well find someone you like!

    I hope you find an ENT that is right for you and that can maybe give you some of the answers you are looking for!

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