Ruptured eardrum? Ruptured eardrum?

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Thread: Ruptured eardrum?

  1. #1
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    Default Ruptured eardrum?

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    Male in my thirties, 5í11 and 220.

    I think I ruptured my eardrum yesterday during presses. The weight wasnít remotely heavy - doing some easy reps to get back into it after taking a couple weeks off from the movement - but at the end of the last set there was a ringing in my right ear that still hasnít gone away after twenty-four hours and everything on that side is muffled. Iím back to the gym tomorrow and trying to figure out how to train around it. The internet tells me that I need to lay off lifting for a month - obviously that is just not happening, but I also donít want to screw myself up any worse. It seems this kind of thing isnít entirely unheard of, so I was wondering whether you or members of the board have had any experience with it and know of any precautions I can take beyond being extra careful not to screw up my Valsalva (planning to lift with my mouth open tomorrow, which is going to be a pain, but I think the trade-off is acceptable to keep pressure out of my ears for now).

  2. #2
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    Since you don't really know what actually happened, and since presses do not rupture eardrums, I guess you'd better get it checked.

  3. #3
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    Yes that wouldnít suggest a perforated eardrum to me- tinnitus (ringing) and muffled feeling is non specific and heavily related to fatigue and stress. By all means get a health professional to examine your ear but this could settle and doesnít necessarily need to interrupt your training (valsalvas shouldnít affect the pressure in your middle ear too much as itís a closed bony lined box- you need high pressure in the throat to do that like breathing
    out against a closed mouth/nose)

  4. #4
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    Interesting. Never heard of this happening.

    Is it possible that you had/have a sinus infection or ear infection?

  5. #5
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    Not saying it canít happen but in over 30 years of practice, Iíve NEVER seen exercise of ANY kind as a mechanism of injury for a perforated ear drum. This obviously doesnít include trauma. Itís always been either infection or more commonly Q-Tips.

    Never put anything in your ear canal smaller than your fist.

    That said, sometimes cerumen can build and build until a discrete instant where sudden occlusion of the ear canal occurs thatís a bit frightening for the patient. Someone needs to look in your ears.

  6. #6
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    About 10 years ago, during one of my first relatively heavy press reps, I had something similar happen - heard a "pop" in my head and then mild ringing. Went to ear specialists who found no physical damage (def no ear drum rupture) but some hearing deteriation (I was about 48 then and ex rock star so no surprise).

    In any case I've had persistent mild tinnitus since then. I'm not saying the press caused it - hard to see how that could be- but the strain of that hard rep does seem to have somehow triggered it....

  7. #7
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    Thanks Everyone, this is now going to be more for the archive than for my own sake. Iíve just been to the doctor, and heís diagnosed me with sudden sensorineural hearing loss - i.e. they know Iíve lost some inner ear function but not why or how. In contrast to Dr. Internet, he doesnít think thereís likely to be any significant connection to training. However, he said I need to focus on getting the ear healed for the next week. To help with that, heís prescribed me a weekís worth of steroids (not in the U.S.). This has a 2/3 chance of being at least somewhat helpful, but thereís a chance it wonít work. I really hope it does, though, because the next step is steroid injections, and since this is an inner ear issue... as someone who is pathetically squeamish about holes on my face and nervous around needles, I am pretty sure they would need to sedate me or strap me down to a table to get the job done.

    Iíll report back on how well the steroids work and what my experience is like when I get back to training. I donít expect there will be anything of interest, but either way it will at least be on the record.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erik Y View Post
    Male in my thirties, 5í11 and 220.

    I think I ruptured my eardrum yesterday during presses. The weight wasnít remotely heavy - doing some easy reps to get back into it after taking a couple weeks off from the movement - but at the end of the last set there was a ringing in my right ear that still hasnít gone away after twenty-four hours and everything on that side is muffled. Iím back to the gym tomorrow and trying to figure out how to train around it. The internet tells me that I need to lay off lifting for a month - obviously that is just not happening, but I also donít want to screw myself up any worse. It seems this kind of thing isnít entirely unheard of, so I was wondering whether you or members of the board have had any experience with it and know of any precautions I can take beyond being extra careful not to screw up my Valsalva (planning to lift with my mouth open tomorrow, which is going to be a pain, but I think the trade-off is acceptable to keep pressure out of my ears for now).
    Just always make sure you're sitting left of wherever your wife is sitting. You're welcome.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erik Y View Post
    Thanks Everyone, this is now going to be more for the archive than for my own sake. I’ve just been to the doctor, and he’s diagnosed me with sudden sensorineural hearing loss - i.e. they know I’ve lost some inner ear function but not why or how. In contrast to Dr. Internet, he doesn’t think there’s likely to be any significant connection to training. However, he said I need to focus on getting the ear healed for the next week. To help with that, he’s prescribed me a week’s worth of steroids (not in the U.S.).
    What "steroids" did he prescribe?

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    You live in China?

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