Why do patients with Fibromyalgia complain of Ear-related symptoms?

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Fibromyalgia is a bewildering and largely misunderstood disorder characterized by widespread pain and tenderness accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory issues, and gastrointestinal concerns. Because the array of possible symptoms is so extensive (and there remains no clear consensus on how to diagnose the disorder), many feel lost as to what is affecting them and what to do about it.

The most important thing to remember is that fibromyalgia may be poorly understood, but it is very real. By becoming more aware of the signs and symptoms of the disorder, you can help your doctor help you identify fibromyalgia and access treatment that may greatly improve your quality of life.

Feeling of fullness in the ear

If you suffer from fibromyalgia then you know that the list of symptoms is dozens of items long and that many sufferers experience a large number of symptoms. One common symptom of fibromyalgia is ear pain. The pain may occur in or around the ear. Often patients complain of a feeling of fullness in the ear. The ear may also ache or experience ringing.

What is the cause of fibromyalgia ear pain and how can it be addressed in a natural way without prescription medication? My ears crackle, feel like they are submerged in water, feels full, flutter and I have other odd sensations that come and go. My hearing is not good, particularly on certain days.

What is to be done? So little is known about fibromyalgia that each and every symptom, although shared by those of us with this condition, is not properly diagnosed by specialists, I try heating pads to my stiff neck, meditation, exercise, but to no successful end. My chiropractor does give me some degree of relief, but it is temporary.

Ear problem springs from the central nervous system

While the connection has not been determined for certain, the one thing that is becoming clear is that ear pain experienced by patients with fibromyalgia is not caused by a problem in the ear itself. One study from just last year determined that the problem springs from the central nervous system.

But just because the problem is in the nervous system and not the ear doesn’t mean that the pain isn’t real. Unfortunately, many medical practitioners will just prescribe something for the pain rather than looking for the root cause of the problem.

Ear Problems Common in Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is frequently associated with ear-related symptoms such as feeling of ear fullness, earache, and tinnitus (ringing in the ear). We have seen improvements in ear problems in those who are suffering with fibromyalgia and those who are not.

 

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Recent research that appeared in the Journal of Clinical Rheumatology sought to determine how fibromyalgia and ear problems are related. While fibromyalgia is frequently associated with ear-related symptoms such as feeling of ear fullness, earache, and tinnitus, the pathogenesis of these ear-related symptoms in fibromyalgia patients is unknown.

Here, we focused on clarifying the pathogenesis of ear fullness, a particularly common symptom observed in fibromyalgia patients. Twenty patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia on outpatient psychosomatic treatment complaining of ear-related symptoms answered our questionnaire and underwent neurotological examination, including pure tone audiometry and Eustachian tube function testing.

While ear-related symptoms were significantly exacerbated after onset of fibromyalgia, we noted no correlation between the presence or absence of feeling of ear fullness and abnormal findings on neurotological examination. Given our findings, we suspect that onset of ear fullness may be associated not with abnormal findings in the middle and inner ear function tests but with other causes, such as central desensitization.

Medication Side Effects

It is important to note that tinnitus can be a side effect of treatment with antidepressant medications, as well as a side effect of major depression. In light of the fact that many fibromyalgia patients suffer from comorbid depression and as a result, receive treatment with antidepressant medications, it can be difficult to determine the cause of tinnitus when it presents in a depressed fibromyalgia patient.

Also Read: Misophonia in Fibromyalgia & CFS

Adding to the confusion is the fact that dizziness is also a common side effect of many prescription medications, in particular antidepressants.

Close monitoring is necessary

As a result, it is very important for fibromyalgia patients who suffer from tinnitus and/or dizziness to closely monitor and track their treatments. Diligent tracking of symptoms such as these alongside tracking of medications and other treatment efforts can help to narrow down and pinpoint the cause of new or worsening symptoms. This can expedite treatment modifications that may bring quicker symptomatic relief to the patient

Misalignment of the Upper Neck and Fibromyalgia

A common underlying cause of pain is a misalignment of the upper neck. When the C1 and C2 vertebrae become misaligned the results can be any number of symptoms including ear pain and many of the other symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Why is this case? These two upper neck vertebrae lie at the base of the brain stem. Any misalignment can thus cause neurological problems that may not display as pain in the neck or spine, but as many and varied symptoms. Because of this fact, upper cervical chiropractic is a logical fibromyalgia ear pain approach. It attacks the symptoms at their source instead of just treating the pain.

Related Article: Fibromyalgia – Coping with Sensory Overload

Injury to the upper cervical spine

Studies have connected upper cervical chiropractic to relieve of the symptoms of both fibromyalgia as well as chronic fatigue syndrome. An injury to the upper cervical spine can cause many of the symptoms related to both conditions and the symptoms may take years to surface making diagnosis of the initial injury difficult.

By giving upper cervical chiropractic a try as a natural, drug-free fibromyalgia ear pain treatment, you may discover that the ear pain isn’t the only thing about your health that improves dramatically.

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Reference:

  • Fibromyalgia and Ear Problem: How they are Related ? via Restoration Spinal Care

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