Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Did you Hear the Bad News That Turned Out to be Good News?
Back in March, I went to the emergency room for some intense ear pain in my left ear (read all about that here). I was diagnosed with an outer ear infection and was given some strong pain pills and ear drops. I was half deaf for about a week, but then began follow-up appointments with an audiologist and an otolaryngologist. The doctor told me that I hadn't had an ear infection, but rather had suffered trauma to my left ear. I remembered then about three weeks earlier, at work, I had slammed the side of my head into a police car while trying to remove someone out of the back seat. It hurt at the time, but I had forgotten all about it.
They also determined was that I had moderate hearing loss in my left ear. The doctor started me on a nasal allergy spray as well as allergy pills to see if allergies had anything to do with my ear being blocked. I had no external allergy symptoms, but what the heck?
For work, we have our hearing tested annually. I had data for the past eight years on how my hearing has been. The doctor asked me to bring it with me when I returned to see him. To make a long story short, I was re-tested by the audiologist. There was no significant improvement in my hearing, unfortunately. In fact, they told me that if I were older, my hearing loss is when people started looking at hearing aids. :( They also told me that my hearing loss is right in the range of where normal human conversation is. So if you're talking to me and you see my favoring my right ear, now you now.
The good news was that when the doctor reviewed my hearing tests for the last several years, he noted that my hearing had not deteriorated over that time. The bad news (moderate hearing loss) turned out to be good news (it hasn't gotten any worse!).