Q. Can TMJ cause ear pain by hitting a nerve or pressing the eustachian tube?

Hello doctor,

I am a 35-year-old male. I have facial pain, and I do not take any medications for the issue. I took an MRI.

I need an opinion of my results of MRI brain. I am hoping to get a good look at my TMJ issues and any nerve issues. I got a report that said, few deep white matter T2 signal hyperintense foci. What does it mean?

Everything I read about the white matter is bad. I am consulting with a specialist on that. Is it something to worry about? Is it possible to look for the position of TMJ with an MRI?

Thanks for your help.



Welcome to

I have gone through your MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) report (attachments removed to protect the patient’s identity).

It is normal but small hyperintensity may be due to decreased blood flow to the small areas in the brain. It might be due to migraine headache that leads to spasm of blood vessels resulting in ischemia. It could also be due to arteriosclerosis, lipohyalinosis, or fibrinoid necrosis.I suggest you the following investigations to rule out the cause,

1) MRI angio.

2) Fasting lipid profile.

3) c-ANCA (classical antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody).

4) p-ANCA (perinuclear antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody).

5) ANA (antinuclear antibody).

6) Carotid doppler.

7) Viral load.

8) Echocardiogram.

9) Blood pressure.

Also check your blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Do not worry your TM joint looks normal here. So please review with reports or consult with your neurophysician he will examine and treat you accordingly.

Take care.

Hello doctor,

Thank you for the reply.

I have one more question. My TMJ seems to be causing severe ear pain and eustachian tube dysfunction. Is there anything in the MRI that suggests that the jaw is hitting a nerve or pressing the eustachian tube? I am having a lot of tingling in the teeth as well as the facial area. It worsens after eating. You said the TMJ is in the correct position and has not moved forward or backward?




Welcome back to

In your MRI, there are no osseous and calvarial abnormalities. Usually, TMJ problems present like pain while chewing or opening the mouth, and pain may radiate to the ear. Also, allergy may cause eustachian tube blockage resulting in pain. There are possibilities of trigeminal neuralgia to present with these symptoms.

I suggest you avoid cool drinks and food that aggravate your problem. Take tablet Levocetirizine twice daily for five days, continue B complex medicines, and do steam inhalation thrice daily for five days.

Also, get an x-ray of TMJ to rule out the pathologies.

If there is no improvement, consult your neurologist to examine and treat you with the neuropathy drugs like Carbamazepine.

Would you please update with your reports?

Take care.

Was this answer helpful?


Same symptoms doesn’t mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Related Questions:
I have a pulsatile tinnitus in my inner ear for the last six weeks. Please help.

TMJ disorders usually produce clicking, grating or popping sounds along with tinnitus that increases in intensity over time or aggravate the ear condition but if you feel that it is worsening continuosly it would signify an inner ear infection (like ...   Read full

Why the ear pain increased after using prescribed ear drops?

.. your concerns. Regarding your ear pain, it is most likely what is called otitis externa which is an infection of the outer canal of the ear most likely fungal. Wet ear is the most common cause also called swimmer's ear. The most appropriate manag...   Read full

Why do I have pain and tenderness in my jaw, teeth sensitivity, and neck pain?

.. gone through your concern. In my opinion, you seem to have a temporomandibular joint issue. It causes referred pain with upper neck stability issues. I suggest you kindly consult a physiotherapist for having a thorough physical examination and tak...   Read full

Also Read Answers From:

ideaComprehensive Medical Second Opinion.Submit your Case

Also Read

The New COVID Variant From South Africa (Omicron)
The World Health Organisation has enlisted Omicron to be a variant of concern. Just scroll down the article to know abou...  Read more»
Managing Diabetes During Festive Season
All the festivals are indirectly a danger sign for diabetic patients. Read this article to know more about how to handle...  Read more»
What You Should Eat and Drink for A Healthy Life!!
Food is essential for our survival, and what we eat definitely impacts our health. We can easily reduce the risk of many...  Read more»

Ask your health query to a doctor online?

Ask an Internal Medicine Physician Now

* guaranteed answer within 4 hours.

Disclaimer: No content published on this website is intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website. Read our Editorial Process to know how we create content for health articles and queries.