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  #1  
Old 09-02-2004, 08:08 PM
MelCthefirst MelCthefirst is offline
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Ear cartilage pain?

Every so often I get a strange pain when I touch the cartilage around my ear, it usually only last about 10 - 20 minutes. Anybody else get this? know what it could be?
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  #2  
Old 09-02-2004, 09:04 PM
chique chique is offline
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No idea what it is. I'm just glad I'm not the only freak. Feels almost like getting poked with a blunt pin, doesn't it?
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  #3  
Old 09-03-2004, 09:27 AM
FX45 4Ever FX45 4Ever is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chique
No idea what it is. I'm just glad I'm not the only freak. Feels almost like getting poked with a blunt pin, doesn't it?
Does this only happen when you are writing and sewing?
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  #4  
Old 09-03-2004, 10:13 AM
Bookkeeper Bookkeeper is offline
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I have what seems to be the same problem. Pain, often extreme pain, in the external ear which lasts for 5-30 minutes and then just goes away. Usually it's my left ear, and it almost always happens when I'm sleeping. The pain level is bearable but enough to wake me up and keep me awake, and is worse when I move my head and really bad if I touch the affected ear. Sometimes it happens when I'm awake, and I can feel the pain beginning, with a hot feeling in the ear associated with the onslaught.

I assume it is some sort of swelling made worse by the limited space available between the cartilege and skin of the external ear, but I can't see any visible difference from the other ear other than sometimes a slight reddening. It happens infrequently enough and goes away quickly enough that I've never bothered to see a doctor about it.

Anybody got the Straight Dope on this phenomenon?
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  #5  
Old 09-03-2004, 10:16 AM
quiltguy154 quiltguy154 is offline
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I've been experiencing this same pain for the last few years. Seems to occur when I'm preparing to go to bed. The external ear is so painful, I cannot touch it, or even lay down on my right side[it has never happened to my left ear] I've always assumed it was due to a fluid build-up within the ear, but doing a few Valsalva maneuvers doesn't help at all. Pain sometimes disappears in a few minutes, but usually lasts an hour or more. Paging ENT folk, any words of wisdom?
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  #6  
Old 09-05-2004, 03:10 PM
MelCthefirst MelCthefirst is offline
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Wow, it is so good to hear that I'm not the only one. I have discovered that if I touch the ear, despite the pain and move the cartilage around a bit, sometimes the pain goes!
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  #7  
Old 09-05-2004, 05:37 PM
Peregrine Peregrine is offline
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I used to get this too, for several years, always on awakening. It went away quite suddenly a few months ago, the very minute I asked myself whether it could be psychosomatic. I'm guessing that means yes.
More details in an earlier thread.
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  #8  
Old 09-05-2004, 06:05 PM
MelCthefirst MelCthefirst is offline
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I have a sister who is a scientist and hyperchondriac. She told me to shut up about psycho mumbo jumbo when I suggested that something she had was psychosomatic. So because this is an area that I have dealings with, I doubt that it is psychosomatic for me, however one can never rule this out. I haven't noticed it occuring when I have been particularly stressed.
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  #9  
Old 09-05-2004, 10:35 PM
Peregrine Peregrine is offline
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Mine wasn't when I was particularly stressed either. It took a long time for me even to suspect that it was part of my brain-generated physical suffering. But the brain-generated physical relief was impressive. I think people underestimate their brains. They seem to think they know what's going on in there most of the time. Somebody suggests that their brain is up to something, so they check and they find that no, their brain is all innocent and truthful. But you know where this information is coming from? The brain! What did they expect it to say? It's a lying pile of wrinkled goo! Of course it's going to claim to be innocent! It says, "Look, I'm only capable of imaginary symptoms, and these are obviously real symptoms, so how could it be me?" And people fall for that! As if brains had no links to the endocrine system, and had never been caught producing very real changes in physical condition for no apparent reason. So don't be a sap--show your brain who's boss. You can start just by letting it know you're on to its little game. Or maybe you're really sure you're not being lied to. Hey, that's a beautiful thing. All I know is, if it were my brain, I'd be checking its story.
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  #10  
Old 09-06-2004, 03:23 PM
MelCthefirst MelCthefirst is offline
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Yes, modern western medicine is now saying that it has severely underestimated the power of the placebo - in effect how the brain can be fooled. I've just read an article about sugar pills (I think it was in New Scientist) and how if someone believes they will work, sugar pills have the possibility to cure many things but not HIV and cancer! However, learning to control pain, even though you know all of this, can still be quite difficult.
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  #11  
Old 09-09-2004, 08:57 AM
Bookkeeper Bookkeeper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MelCthefirst
Wow, it is so good to hear that I'm not the only one. I have discovered that if I touch the ear, despite the pain and move the cartilage around a bit, sometimes the pain goes!
I had another episode of ear pain this morning and tried Mel's massage treatment. It hurt like hell, but the pain was gone within 2-3 minutes instead of the 10-30 minutes it usually lasts!
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  #12  
Old 09-09-2004, 03:37 PM
MelCthefirst MelCthefirst is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bookkeeper
I had another episode of ear pain this morning and tried Mel's massage treatment. It hurt like hell, but the pain was gone within 2-3 minutes instead of the 10-30 minutes it usually lasts!
Glad to hear it, now that you have had success with this method, I am more confident that it isn't just random.
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  #13  
Old 06-03-2010, 10:30 PM
earpain earpain is offline
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Empathy

Thanks for sharing...while recovering from a middle ear infection (otitis media), it is unusual to have outer (cartilage) pain but I do. Could it be TMJ (temporal mandibular joint) related?
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  #14  
Old 06-03-2010, 11:22 PM
opmike opmike is online now
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Wow, I thought I was the only one that experienced this. No one else I've asked seems to know what the hell I'm talking about.

I only seem to get it when awakening from a full night's sleep or from a nap. I've never had it for anywhere near 30 minutes, though. Maybe 10 tops.

I just always assumed it was due to poor circulation from the pressure of your ear being squeezed between your skull and whatever you're laying against. No idea if this is the actual cause though.

One thing that first brought me to this conclusion was my occasional instances of falling asleep on my hand. I'd wake up in the middle of the night with an intense, shooting pain that would gradually dissipate after I moved my fingers around and the natural level of blood flow returned.

Last edited by opmike; 06-03-2010 at 11:23 PM..
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  #15  
Old 06-03-2010, 11:43 PM
PBear42 PBear42 is offline
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Not sure this fits, but I have similar symptoms of tenderness to touch which was diagnosed as actinic keratosis, an early form of skin cancer. Obviously, only a doctor can tell you whether this is your problem as well. On the bright side, if so, it's relatively easily treatable (see other pages at the link provided).
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  #16  
Old 06-04-2010, 12:35 AM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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When I get that shooting ear cartilage pain, what seems to knock it out instantly is pinching the webbing of my hand between my thumb and first finger very firmly (you've got to get right in there, deep into the webbing, and press about as hard as you can). There is apparently an accupressure point there that corresponds to the ear.
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  #17  
Old 07-26-2010, 02:45 AM
Cabby - AZ Cabby - AZ is offline
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Having had that same mysterious ear cartilage pain occasionally over the last several years, I am usually able to wear it out within an hour, or so. However, last night it started up - chronic pain -
and it has been with me all day today. It sounds exactly like what others describe. To touch the ear
(near where it connects to the head) is almost unbearable.
After reading here, I have to tell you that I used two things - Mel's massage (it does hurt like the dickens) and then I used Cat Whisperer's method of really "digging" into the web between thumb and first finger. For the first time in hours the pain is nearly gone. I am going to continue to use these methods because they are the only things that have worked.
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  #18  
Old 07-26-2010, 08:55 AM
BleizDu BleizDu is offline
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Oh my God.
Oh my God.
I thought I was the only one!

I sometimes (Not had it for some weeks, knocks on wood!) get this piercing pain in the ear cartilage, when I've been sleeping. It is so painful I can barely touch it and the pain is not relieved when I switch sides to keep on sleeping, it lasts for loooong minutes and I can't do anything about it. I've had this for like ten years.
I told me it was because I don't move much when I sleep, and usually always sleep on the same side, so my ear is compressed for hours.

I almost started a thread about that a couple of weeks ago, but thought it was too weird to describe. (yeah, I know, we currently have threads about a goatse look alike ring and a cooking book with semen as its main ingredient, and I tought this topic was weird )
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  #19  
Old 07-26-2010, 09:05 AM
johnpost johnpost is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cat Whisperer View Post
When I get that shooting ear cartilage pain, what seems to knock it out instantly is pinching the webbing of my hand between my thumb and first finger very firmly (you've got to get right in there, deep into the webbing, and press about as hard as you can). There is apparently an accupressure point there that corresponds to the ear.
this is suggested for headache pain also.

to practice the method and see if it might work for you, try it when you have no pain. not only will you feel some pain at the thumb site, you might also feel some headache pain while you are doing it and for maybe for a minute after.
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  #20  
Old 07-26-2010, 04:01 PM
LouisB LouisB is offline
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You sufferers are not alone. I've experienced the pain you're talking about off and on for several years and always in the left ear. I've mentioned the pain to an excellent dermatologist and his response was a baffled look and a shrug. (I suspected it was skin cancer.)
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  #21  
Old 07-26-2010, 05:15 PM
Dr. Woo Dr. Woo is offline
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I get it too, only on the right side, and it really hurts. My ear gets hot and flushed too. I think it's TMJ pain.
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  #22  
Old 07-27-2010, 12:50 AM
Cabby - AZ Cabby - AZ is offline
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Just have to give you a follow-up on my post about a day ago. The ear pain did leave before I went to bed; however, before arising this morning I got a steady heavy ache in that ear. Sleepily I tried the
web pressure, the pain left, and I went back to sleep. Today there has not been one sign of it, thankfully. (the ache was not inside the ear, but on the surface as before)

I have a feeling that this was so prolonged because in AZ we are having a lot of humidity this time of year, which affects my arthritis adversely. Perhaps it affects ear cartilage also, if there is some irregularity in that area.
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  #23  
Old 07-27-2010, 01:00 AM
Alice The Goon Alice The Goon is offline
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There is a painful condition that can develop on the cartilage of the ear- for the life of me I can't recall the name of it. But it's benign and mostly comes from sleeping on that side. There are special pillows you can buy for it, with a hole in the middle for the ear to fit into so you're not putting pressure on it.
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  #24  
Old 12-27-2010, 08:36 AM
joolsg1960 joolsg1960 is offline
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pain in the ear

Quote:
Originally Posted by LouisB View Post
You sufferers are not alone. I've experienced the pain you're talking about off and on for several years and always in the left ear. I've mentioned the pain to an excellent dermatologist and his response was a baffled look and a shrug. (I suspected it was skin cancer.)
OMG just found this web site by googling and can't believe I am not alone. Woke up here in snowy London in agony yet again from sleeping on my side. The pain in the cartilage is often so excruciating it wakes me several times a night. I have tried the ear massage trick and even though it hurts more initially, it DOES make the pain stop. We need to come up with a great name to describe this so we can convince the medical profession it is real. Don't think there is a cure- love the sound of the pillow with the hole to relieve pressure- feel a business idea coming on! Jools
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  #25  
Old 12-27-2010, 10:00 AM
Alice The Goon Alice The Goon is offline
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Originally Posted by Alice The Goon View Post
There is a painful condition that can develop on the cartilage of the ear- for the life of me I can't recall the name of it. But it's benign and mostly comes from sleeping on that side. There are special pillows you can buy for it, with a hole in the middle for the ear to fit into so you're not putting pressure on it.


I did remember the name of it shortly after this post.

It's CNHC, for short. Weird that your dermatologist wouldn't know about it, LouisB. It's very common in older men.
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  #26  
Old 12-28-2010, 11:21 AM
LouisB LouisB is offline
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Originally Posted by Alice The Goon View Post
I did remember the name of it shortly after this post.

It's CNHC, for short. Weird that your dermatologist wouldn't know about it, LouisB. It's very common in older men.
Well, I have a history of skin cancers; I get them cut off like a lot of people get haircuts. I asked specifically if the condition was caused by skin cancer and his puzzled look might have been in response to his internal question of "why the hell would he think that?" And, who knows, since I am an older man, my memory of the occasion might well be faulty. That's not intended to be snarky; my memory is taking a hell of a beating in these declining years.
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  #27  
Old 12-30-2010, 11:58 AM
joolsg1960 joolsg1960 is offline
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Originally Posted by Alice The Goon View Post
I did remember the name of it shortly after this post.

It's CNHC, for short. Weird that your dermatologist wouldn't know about it, LouisB. It's very common in older men.
Alice, thank you so much for that web link- surprise, surprise- I was actually diagnosed with CNHC 4 years ago when I went to my doctor with a small crust on my right ear cartilage and thought it was skin cancer. A specialist dermatologist diagnosed CNHC and said there was nothing I could do about it. I never equated the crust with the severe pain I get in both ears and which I know happens due to the pressure of lying on the cartilage. I now need to find the wonderful cushion with a hole in it to relieve the pressure. I will post any links I find. Thanks to all for the Info. happy New year to all. Jools
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  #28  
Old 09-07-2011, 05:27 PM
BronzeSculptor BronzeSculptor is offline
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First time responder but I need to add my symptoms. I believe my pain comes originally from my glasses. The pressure of the fine wire ear piece. If not, it is because of that pressure that I feel the pain. Bouts come on an irregular basis and not related to sleep. stress or activity. Touching cartelage behind the ear, under, near jaw, really hurts. Doesn't matter if a light touch or hard, the pain is the same. It can be constant or intermittent and jabbing pain during bout. Massage really hurts but does help eliminate the pain. I have used ice and heat, and the latter works best but the weight of the pad even hurts. Now I have a new solution-- Squeezing the web between the thumb and first finger of the hand with the pain. I noticed pain lessening immediately, though not gone. Fortunately this pain my infrequent but really bad when it comes. Thanks for the acupuncture suggestion and for making me feel more normal. My internest didn't seem to have a clue!
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  #29  
Old 02-19-2012, 01:59 PM
julzspassion julzspassion is offline
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seven year old and myself

Its is comforting to know that I am not losing my mind, I have the same pain in the cartilage and the doctors think I am crazy, mine does not happen at night or in the morning though, mine seem to happen when I am active ie: dancing, when I used to go clubbing I would get this severe pain and then I would have to move my ear around ( which hurt like hell) and wait for a small click! Then it would release the pain for the time being. As I get older it seems to be happening more often, now my 7 year old daughter is showing the same symptoms, I do not want her to have this pain all her life, she gets in quite frequently and again doctors don't seem to understand what she is talking about. Has anyone ever heard of this being hereditary? We both have a few symptoms of TMD/TMJ but as a child I was told that they really coudn't fint her for a splint due to her losing and growing adult teeth, it is soooo frustrating, I am glad to know that we are not the only ones.
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  #30  
Old 02-20-2012, 11:15 AM
andikeesi andikeesi is offline
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Julzspassion, I have also been experiencing a terrible ear cartilage pain. It has gotten increasingly worse in the past year. I have recently been diagnosed with chronic iritis and will be seeing a rheumatologist for the first time next week. It seems that there is many things that can cause the pain that we are all experiencing. For me, it never seems to happen after sleeping, always mid day to evening. And it always disappears before I go to sleep . I have four children and 2 of them complain of similar and very mild problem but with very little pain. Surprisingly, I talked to my father last night and it had happened to him yesterday for the first time. I am pretty sure that it is an inflammation disorder like polychondritis. My I am 37 and have been getting it for at least a few years but it has progressively been getting worse and much more frequent,like at least twice a week. My father is 58 and it just started. My children are 14 and 18 who are feeling similar problems. I am interested in speaking with the rheumy and I will keep everyone posted. I hate to see that others are feeling the horrible pain that I am but maybe we can all figure it out together.
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  #31  
Old 05-27-2012, 12:09 AM
Daffodil_bandit Daffodil_bandit is offline
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I have been dealing with external ear pain for several years now and it is almost 24/7. Pain seems to come from the crease and go up into the pinna. I have tried not wearing my glasses for 6 weeks, accupuncture, night guard, antidepressants, oral cortisone. Cortisone injections give me relief for a month, but the pain comes back. Salonpas patches cut into tiny squares and applied to the back of my ear helps the most, but I have to apply a new one every morning as a preventative. I'm quite proud of coming up with that one! If I wait to apply the patch after the pain starts, it won't work. They have an ingredient like aspirin. Recently got two holes cut into my latex pillow to try to help at night. my ENT is willing to refer me to a rheumatologist, which I may do. He also wants me to consider letting him excise tissue from the crease of my ear. I'll try the accupressure technique described above after this cortisone shot wears off. It's good to find some people with similar problems, but I wouldn't wish this on anyone!
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  #32  
Old 05-27-2012, 01:37 AM
Zep Tepi Zep Tepi is offline
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I was always under the impression that any cartilage problem such as ear lobes and nose was caused by excess uric acid in the blood and when it inflames the cartilage of the toes it is called gout.

Try Googling it.
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  #33  
Old 05-27-2012, 03:57 AM
The Niply Elder The Niply Elder is offline
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Behold

The most powerful zombie thead of them all! The sextuple respawning zombie! I swear the seventh time will be the end of the world and we'll all know because our ears will hurt...
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  #34  
Old 05-27-2012, 10:24 AM
Daffodil_bandit Daffodil_bandit is offline
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Thanks for the tip on gout. I don't seem to have any of the risk factors, but I will follow up on it.
Not sure about zombie comment. Did I commit a breach of etiquette?
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  #35  
Old 05-27-2012, 02:49 PM
Jake Jake is offline
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Originally Posted by opmike View Post
Wow, I thought I was the only one that experienced this. No one else I've asked seems to know what the hell I'm talking about.

I only seem to get it when awakening from a full night's sleep or from a nap. I've never had it for anywhere near 30 minutes, though. Maybe 10 tops.

I just always assumed it was due to poor circulation from the pressure of your ear being squeezed between your skull and whatever you're laying against. No idea if this is the actual cause though.

One thing that first brought me to this conclusion was my occasional instances of falling asleep on my hand. I'd wake up in the middle of the night with an intense, shooting pain that would gradually dissipate after I moved my fingers around and the natural level of blood flow returned.
Yes, this is the conclusion I came to also.
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  #36  
Old 05-27-2012, 03:13 PM
Colibri Colibri is offline
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Medical advice is best suited to IMHO.

Colibri
General Questions Moderator
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  #37  
Old 06-09-2012, 01:29 PM
SonoraQwest SonoraQwest is offline
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Ear cartiladge pain

I was really glad, and rather surprised too, to find the comments here about this weird pain.

I've experienced a similar pain over the last five years. It first happened suddenly, during the day, and lasted about ten minutes - with extreme tenderness and pain around the outside of the left ear and front cartilage area. Couldn't bear to touch it, but just waited it out. Over the first year it happened only 2 or 3 times and continued like that for about 4 years. Then it started lasting longer, a half hour or so, so I took 2 aspirin, and that took care of it. It still happened only three or four times a year.

A little over a year ago it struck again. The pain and tenderness was intense. i was out in public and so I tried to just keep going and tough it out. I was ready to give it up and cry "Uncle" when it suddenly stopped! Seemed like I moved something in my neck, jaw or ear area and something released. The relief was immediate.

I mentioned it to my PCP. She sent me to a TMJ specialtst. They took xrays, etc, etc. and said there was arthritic deterioration in the TMJ causing the disk to slip and impinge on a nerve (though the pain is atypical and very intermittent). Insurnace covered the big bucks for upper and lower applicances (mouth splints).

Tried wearing the splints as explained by the TMJ specialist.
Though they were modified several times, They were extremely uncomfortable. My shoulder and neck muscles tightened up, couldn't sleep, and once when I tried to insert the lower one, the outer ear pain started again. I took it out and the pain stopped. So - no more splints! Better to experience the pain once in awhile rather than the continuing discomfort from the splints.

My dentists are not sure what is going on either. One says it is muscular spasm, another says it may just be arthritis. The don't believe it's TMJ related since it is so intermittent. But now the pain is more frequent. I've tried the message technique, and IT DOES WORK! I have to catch it just as the pain starts and then I can "short circuit" the pain within about 5 minutes. Hurts like H while I'm messaging it though.

I have noticed over the past several months that the muscles on the left side leading from the lower neck and ear to the sternum and the clavicle (the sternocleidomastoid muscle) can be very tender and this can be an indicator of the impending ear cartilage pain. Maybe it has always been this way and caused the original pain - or - is this ear pain referred from the muscle or the TMJ??

So - is it really TMD or is it tightness (spasm) in the muscle or . . . . ?

Another possibility is to contact an orofacial pain specialist trained in atypical ear pain.

I'm also going to try the Salonpas pain relief patches. And so it goes -
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  #38  
Old 06-28-2012, 11:11 AM
KathyP46 KathyP46 is offline
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Thank you!

I am so glad I found this forum. Thought I was losing my mind trying to explain the ear pain I feel on the outside of my ear when I wake up. Sometimes worse than others but always upon awakening. Feels so bad sometimes it wakes me up. It has been happening for a few years now off and on but frustrating.
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  #39  
Old 06-28-2012, 02:24 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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Thanks for the tip on gout. I don't seem to have any of the risk factors, but I will follow up on it.
Not sure about zombie comment. Did I commit a breach of etiquette?
When a thread that is old is resurrected, we call it a Zombie Thread (raised from the dead, you know). It's not a breach of etiquette, but people usually comment on it and make zombie jokes.
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  #40  
Old 08-30-2013, 01:40 AM
ajcolwel45 ajcolwel45 is offline
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Just saw these posts that are a few years old now, and I don't want to get technical, but have you googles 'Chondrodermatitis nodularis chronica helicis - a conservative therapeutic approach by decompression.'
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  #41  
Old 08-30-2013, 10:47 AM
johnpost johnpost is offline
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triple zombie or no

about 2 1/2 years ago it was mentioned.
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  #42  
Old 09-17-2013, 10:39 PM
Mike151jones Mike151jones is offline
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Definitely a zombie if I ever saw one! Anyhow, found this thread and registered so I could post!

Do any of you who experience pain after sleeping with your head resting on its side/ear? If so, I have three questions; 1) Would you consider your ears harder than those of other people your age and/or gender? (I don't reccomend asking to feel the ears of random strangers). 2) Do you sleep with your arm under your pillow around where your ear is? 3) Do any of you have hearing loss?

And I think I'm mostly talking about folks without CNHC. My outer ears are fairly hard and I am only in my low 30s. Also, I don't mean just discomfort, but actual pain for at least 5-10 minutes, but occasionally sometimes 30m+ though.

Last edited by Mike151jones; 09-17-2013 at 10:44 PM..
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  #43  
Old 09-17-2013, 11:12 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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This is the thread that wouldn't die,
We thought it was dead,
But it was only resting,
Because this is the thread that wouldn't die..."


It just occurred to me that the pain I sometimes get in my ear cartilage is indeed on the side I sleep on most of the time. I'm sure the two are related somehow, but I don't know how. Bodies is weird.
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  #44  
Old 09-18-2013, 12:34 PM
Hermitian Hermitian is offline
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Originally Posted by Mike151jones View Post
Definitely a zombie if I ever saw one! Anyhow, found this thread and registered so I could post!

Do any of you who experience pain after sleeping with your head resting on its side/ear? If so, I have three questions; 1) Would you consider your ears harder than those of other people your age and/or gender? (I don't reccomend asking to feel the ears of random strangers). 2) Do you sleep with your arm under your pillow around where your ear is? 3) Do any of you have hearing loss?

And I think I'm mostly talking about folks without CNHC. My outer ears are fairly hard and I am only in my low 30s. Also, I don't mean just discomfort, but actual pain for at least 5-10 minutes, but occasionally sometimes 30m+ though.
I cannot sleep much on my ears because I will wake up with them in terrible pain. I have to have a pillow that I can move the stuffing around a bit to create a little "hole" for my ear to be in (those super fluffy springy hotel pillows are awful).

I do sometimes sleep with my arm under my pillow because this somewhat makes for a large hole for my ear. I have a range of configurations that I use to transfer the weight of my head off of my ear and on to other places on my head/face.

It can be worse when I have bad allergies and I somewhat convinced I have some kind of low grade ear infection because my Eustachian tube does not open up well.

I have been to three ENTs and they just all look at me funny and there is not a lot they think they can do. One has suggested near-permanent tubes in my ears, but I do not want to do that.

I do not have any of those skin cancer type things that the people above are talking about. The pain does not instantly go away like some of the others have mentioned. It just slowly subsides over 15 minutes.

I do not know of my ear cartilage is hard. I don't touch other people's. I do not have major hearing loss.
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  #45  
Old 10-12-2013, 04:10 AM
GG Zookeeper GG Zookeeper is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Cartilage ear pain

Well hello to everyone on here. I am a 47 yr old aussie, from central Victoria in Australia. We are in the start of our spring weather, with major heat expected this year...I have just found this forum and all this wonderful info from you all about ear cartilage pain. I seem to have similarities with a few of you. My problem is with my right ear, although a few nights back, it was both ears...and that was a shock...My pain can start anytime time of day or night. It doesn't matter what I am doing or not doing. It just starts and it's there for the long haul until I can get to something that will help get rid of the pain. Pain killers do nothing. I rely on heat to help me. I did at some stage carry around self-heating pads that I could use if I happen to be out somewhere where I didn't have access to my heat pack and microwave at home. I sometimes am able to cup my hand over my ear to get some warmth to it too. I too have been to the doctor and given the shrug. They don't seem to understand...so how can there be so many people with this inflicting condition and no doctor knowing what it is or how to treat it? For me this started probably about 2 years ago. It was not all the time, maybe a week or two in between attacks, but now it can be every day, several times a day. It drives me to distraction as I cannot concentrate on what I am doing when I am at my worst. I don't have Lupus or RA, but I am looking into Sjrogens...which my mother has...she also has RA, Mitochondrialmyopathy, other arthritis and many many other medical problems, too many to list...but we both have fibromyalgia. I also have TMJ, severely too...a doc told me once, don't ever let any doctor tell you to have your jaw wired !!!! As if !??? But it is so bad that I have to move my jaw sideways several times a day to make this rather audible loud crack on each side. If I don't do that, I swell up and can't eat. I also have a problem with my parotid gland on my left side. It swells up the left side of my face and can be quite tender to the touch. This usually happens after eating sometimes but can also start without eating...this is not as regular a problem as my right ear. I also have tinnitis, had that for 20 years now. Also have problems with sinuses, ear blocking (eustasion tubes), vertigo occassionaly...used to get that real bad and fall down a lot...So I'm guessing that maybe all these connecting "head gear" area contributing factor in this problem? Does anyone else feel that there is a connection between all these factors? And I'm wondering also if this can be associated with Trigeminal Nuralgia? A facial nerve that is in the face, neck and around the ear area also? That is a excruciating pain, a friend experiences this pain and I'm thinking that this cartilage pain is somewhere up there with this pain. I'm at the end of my tether with this. As everyone has described, the pain is the upper outter part of my ear, the hard boney cartilage, with no obvious signs of stress or pain. Cannot be touched without excruciating pain, but like someone else mentioned, if moved about gently, there is a crack or clunk in those nerves and feels like something is being realigned...I sometimes feel it also when turning my head to the side as if it's pulling a nerve or sinew? It can be any time day or night, not just brought on by sleeping on but one night a few nights ago I was up 3 times to get the heat pack...and it continued for a couple of days on and off. Right now I'm good, touch wood...but I never know when it's gunna start up again. I would love to hear from anyone on here that may be in Australia and their experience with doctors about this. Cheers and protect those ears
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  #46  
Old 12-10-2013, 12:33 PM
manalerie manalerie is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Im all about th zombies yo!

So hey, i have the same ish with my ears. Its started out just a few nights a year, now its a few nights a week! I wake with excruciating pain and cant even move- as any movement puts the pain thru the roof. I cant even touch an ice pack to my skin around the ear when this happens. Eventually the pain subsides and i can go back to sleep.

Yesterday i noticed my ear hurting mildly alk day, and thought maybe i was getting an ear infection. At some point i had an itch or something and pressed on the cartilage at tge opening of the ear (something ive done a million times to plug my ears or relieve an inner ear itch) and the pain dropped me to the floor. Its been about 12 hours and i still cant touch that spot.

My pain management doctor thinks this may be a fibromyalgia thing. Something with the nerves.

Ive had issues with fluid and pressure in both ears for years, tmj problems, and my ears are super sensitive to the cold. It would be nice to not have to worry about covering or plugging my ears in the cold- and to not be afraid to SLEEP.



*Luvvin them zombies tho
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  #47  
Old 02-07-2014, 04:18 AM
mom_audrey mom_audrey is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2014
Same here

OMG! I can't believe I'm reading all these. I'm getting the exact pain in fact I've got one at the moment reason I googled it. I just came from a doctor's appointment this morning and he told me about something to do with my jaw. He wants me to get an x-ray.
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  #48  
Old 02-07-2014, 04:25 AM
mom_audrey mom_audrey is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2014
Same here

OMG! I can't believe I'm reading all these. I'm getting the exact pain in fact I've got one at the moment reason I googled it. I just came from a doctor's appointment this morning and he told me about something to do with my jaw. He wants me to get an x-ray at first I was like how the hell's it got something to do with my jaw. My first thought was it's just an inflamed skin but when I ask my husband to have a look at it he can't see anything. When I first started getting this pain it will only last for a minute or two but now it would last for an hour or sometimes more. I can't move my head, I can't touch my ear and it's just too painful.

Would really appreciate any input on this, it's getting really frustrating. Need help desperately as I'm getting the pain more often. Before I won't get it for a month or two but now it's like almost every day.

By the way, I'm also from Aussie
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  #49  
Old 04-17-2014, 02:29 PM
polite_dissenter polite_dissenter is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2014
I may have an answer!

I registered just now solely for the purpose of helping anyone who may stumble upon this thread, as it's--oddly--one of few search results about this mysterious cartilage pain!

After doing some Googling around, I have found theories that it may be due to inflammation inside of our ears, and can be treated with steroids.

It sounded unlikely to me, because the pain is SO intense, SO external, and SO affected by my moving the outer ear--I didn't see how it could be caused by inner inflammation, but I did an experiment and put some cortizone ointment on the dreaded q-tip (actually the beloved q-tip, but likely the cause of my inflammation!), and it worked!!! The pain went away almost instantly!!! & stayed away for weeks!!

Months have passed since then (almost a year), and the pain returns...maybe every few weeks or so? Sometimes a month in between or more (I actually forget about it) & each time it returns, as soon as I get home (it usually happens at work), I do the q-tip/cortizone thing, and it goes away.

& I used to have this pain every day or every other day, INTENSELY, near the end of the work day. I used to think it was from an allergy to my earrings. I tried wearing different types to test (plastic, metal, etc), but there was no rhyme or reason to it. I finally abandoned earrings totally, and would still get the pain. That's when I started Googling.

Doubting myself and my findings, I brought this up to my doctor at a checkup this month. I told him, in true hypochondriac style, that I thought I might have an outer ear infection (which also came up a lot in my Googling). He assured me that I do not, and said that although I don't appear to have an ear wax blockage, I really need to stop cleaning my ears with q-tips, as it can irritate and inflame the middle ear, causing external pain. That cemented it for me. I didn't share with him my cortizone technique with the doc, but I thought I'd leave it here, in the hopes that someone desperately searching online can find relief.

In conclusion:

1.Are you a person who shares our weird, intense, external ear pain that hurts SEVERELY when you touch or move your ear, to the point that you can't wear glasses or, sometimes, move your jaw?
2. Do you clean your ears with q-tips? (perhaps daily, as I like to) or stick something else naughty in your ear to achieve those daily "eargasms" (pen top, bobby pin, nail file, etc.)?
3. Then dab a little cortizone ointment on one of those q-tips/pen caps/bobby pins/etc and ease your inflammation. You're welcome.
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  #50  
Old 05-27-2014, 03:10 AM
Paddydaddy Paddydaddy is offline
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Join Date: May 2014
Wow...just wow

After 20 years I now know that there are other crazies like me!
I will have to try the cortisone trick. The only thing that works for me is to abruptly pull on my earlobe as if I was performing an aggressive chiropractic move. It hurts like a futhermucker. I don't always have the stomach for it.
My wife thinks I'm batshit crazy...
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