Go back to the military doctor...again. They are the only ones who can and should treat active duty soldiers. Medical findings change over time, so things may look different. Mono is a possibility, so an EBV titer and and CBC would be nice to get.
I can't blindly diagnose and treat you over the Internet, so you need re-examined.View Thread
I cannot offer you a patient-specific response, since I have no way of examining your ears, but it appears that you may have two different, unrelated ear issues:
1. When you have pain in the outer ear, this is most likely due to a problem (infection or inflammation) in the ear CANAL, such as swimmer's ear (even if you are not swimming), or the use of Q-tips. This problem is treated with antibiotic/steroid ear drops, not oral antibiotics.
2. When you are advised to "pop your ears", this is a middle ear/eustachian tube problem --- the area on the other side of your eardrum unrelated to the ear canal. Problems in the middle ear do not cause outer ear pain.
I wish that I could examine your ears for a more specific solution, but alas, the Internet poses some insurmountable barriers.View Thread
Thank you for your expert input, Dr. Mella. Laser treatments for tonsilliths are not routinely done in the U.S., but I can see this that may be a therapy that is more cost-effective than a routine tonsillectomy.
A question for you: Is it commonplace for all or most ENTs in Romania to have lasers, or are you associated with a large medical group where this instrument is shared?View Thread
Cipro HC is an antibiotic steroid drop -- one of the few that is approved when (or if) you may have a hole in your eardrum. Cipro is used for otitis externa - an itchy and painful condition in the ear canal, or a middle ear infection if you do have a hole (rupture) in the ear canal or have surgical tubes in place.
Many people with allergies have problems with "stuffy ears" that will not pop. This is often due to dysfunctional Eustachian tubes -- perhaps compromised by allergic swelling of the tissue around these tiny tubes. This is a more difficult condtion to treat.
If your ENTs treatment is not helping, your best bet is to see the ENT again.View Thread
People are often puzzled by white accumulations in their tonsils. Some feel they have Strep, yet they do not really have a red, sore throat. Some people are shocked when these "chunks" fall out, because they can have a terrible smell and taste. What are they?
Some tonsils have holes (crypts) in them, just like the craters on the moon. Food particles and other debris will become trapped, calcify (become hard), decompose (hence the bad taste and smell), and dislodge from time to time. They can also cause your tonsils to enlarge and become inflamed. Many people end up getting antibiotics for these mysterious chunks, but antibiotics do not help.
Other than physically dislodging these "tonsilliths" (the name for those white chunks), and gargling after EVERY meal, the only definitive cure is the surgical removal of the tonsils — a drastic and definitive measure that is not usually necessary.
Unlike the days when tonsils would be surgically removed at your doctor's discretion, insurance companies now have strict surgical criteria that need to be met. Tonsils that become frequently infected (often with Strep), and those that are obstructing the airway or ability to swallow may need to be surgically removed, but it may be more difficult to get the surgical "okay" for tonsilliths.
If you do have a severe and recurrent problem, cryptic tonsils may qualify for surgery if your ENT becomes your advocate.View Thread
The outer ear and ear canal is lined or covered by SKIN. Since skin can cause a variety of dermatological conditions, the causes of an itchy ear can be numberous, from bacterial or fungal infections to common skin conditions like atopic dermatitis (eczema) or even psoriasis.
Q-tips users can develop itchy ears because they strip the protective wax coating from the ear canal. The skin will break down and cause itching, or set the stage for a seconary bacterial or fungal infections.
The most common bacterial infection in the ear canal would be otitis externa, or "swimmer's ear" -- a problem that can occur in people who do not even swim. Water exposure from bathing or showering also can do it, too. When people get water in their ears, they may reach for those Q-tips to wick it out. This repeated and unnecessary practice often results in itching.
Fungus loves to grow in warm, dark places. The ear canal often is a perfect environment for overgrowth of fungus or yeast. Many times, the underlying cause of chronic ear itching may be fungal.
Allergies can also be involved. People with allergies can have itchy eyes, itchy nose, itchy throat, and itchy ears. Basically....all areas of the skin, including the inside of the ear may itch.
The key to effective treatment of an itchy ear is a proper diagnosis. A primary care medical provider is a good place to start, but an ENT or dermatologist should be consulted if a cause is not immediately apparent.
If you are a Q-tip user -- a wax cleaner or an ear-scratcher, then STOP DOING THIS! Sometimes, just allowing the protective wax coating (cerumen) to return is enough to stop the itching.
Itching may be controlled or at least improved by using antihistamines, such as Benadryl, Zyrtec, or Claritin. While this is certainly not a cure, controlling the itching until you can be properly diagnosed may make your symptoms more tolerable.View Thread
That is a very potent steroid....not typically used for chronic eczema -- a skin CONDITION that cannot be cured (only controlled). This choice of topical steroid would not typically bue used on little children.View Thread