My earache increases with hiccups and my ears get blocked easily. Please explain about my problem.

Q. Can eustachian tube catarrh cause ear pain?

Answered by
Dr. Bhadragiri Vageesh Padiyar
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jun 01, 2022 and last reviewed on: Aug 31, 2023

Hello doctor,

I have earache that increases with hiccups. I was trying to unblock my left ear with cotton buds the last couple of days, and there was quite a bit of earwax that came out the other day, but today there was not much of it. I have had tinnitus and problems related to hearing for seven years. As a result, I struggle to hear what people say. I have had my ears syringed multiple times and used different ear drops, but nothing has restored my hearing. My ears get blocked easily, but I wonder what the problem is.



Welcome to

You have developed eustachian tube catarrh that occurs secondary to nasal allergy or inflammation. The eustachian tube ventilates the nose and the ear. When the eustachian tube fails to function, a negative pressure develops in the side of the ear leading to a feeling of vacuum, ringing sounds, feeling of fluid in the ear, and sometimes poor hearing. I suggest you do Valsalva exercises and take steam three to four times a day. Do not use earbuds and avoid having anything cold or spicy for the next two weeks. Stay away from dust as it can cause nasal allergies. It typically takes around two to four weeks for things to settle down. Once the nasal allergies have settled down, the fluid in the ear will slowly reduce, and its associated symptoms will disappear. Please note that the earwax is not creating this trouble, and no ear drop will help. I suggest you also get a hearing evaluation done to rule out high-frequency hearing loss. You can use a Duonase (Fluticasone Propionate and Azelastine) nasal spray twice a day for six weeks. I suggest you take the following medications: 1. Decongestant nasal drops containing Oxymetazoline or Xylometazoline three drops three times a day for one week. 2. A tablet containing a combination of Phenylephrine and Levocetirizine twice a day after food, keeping an interval of 12 hours for one week. Thank you.

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