I have read some people have problems with the feeling of pressure in their ears after Rhinoplasty surgery. Is this common? What are the possible causes of this condition?
Clogged Ear Sensation After Rhinoplasty?
Doctor Answers (7)
Pressure behind the eardrum is usually self-limited
It is not unusual to get swelling of the posterior pharnyx following rhinplasty surgery. I have also seen swelling of this are after the use of an endotracheal tube or laryngeal mask airway. It is usually temporary. If this swelling blocks the eustacian tube then there can be some feeling of pressure behind the ears themselves. This can be relieved by using an anti-histamine or on rarer occasions a steroid.
Normal and temporary
The clogged ear sensation after a rhinoplasty or septoplasty is due to a temporary swelling in the back of the nose, which blocks the eustachian tube. This is normal and resolves in the first week or so after the rhinoplasty surgery.
Clogging of the ears after rhinoplasty
Early post-op patients sometimes have the inability to "clear their ears." This may be due to packing in the nostrils or swelling of the Eustachian tubes. If it is the former, it will improve when the packing is removed. If it is the later, the swelling usually comes down in a few weeks after surgery.
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Swelling around the Eustachian tube.
This is normal and goes away in a week or two. If you are going to fly during this time use a decongestant nasal spray 10 minutes prior to descent.
Ear pressure after surgery will go away.
Sometimes, after surgery, you can get fluid behind the ear-drum that is related to general anesthesia, and placing the oral-tracheal breathing tube. If you're having a clogged ear after rhinoplasty, then see your surgeon, or consult a board-certified ENT for evaluation and treatment.
This should be a temporary concern
Most of the time this sensation is due to swelling in the back of the nose that extends into the eustachian tube which connects the nose with the middle ear space. As swelling declines over the first few weeks so does the sensation!
Ear pressure after rhinoplasty
This is not a common occurence and is more likely related to oropahryngeal and nasopahryngeal swelling that occurs with surgery and sometimes is associated with intubation or laryngeal mask anesthesia.
It generally lasts no longer than 7-10 days and is sometimes treated with decongestants or steroid preparations if severe.
There is no definite way to prevent this.