Ask The Doctor > Questions & Answers > For about 10 days now I have had a fluttering

For about 10 days now I have had a fluttering

Patient: For about 10 days now I have had a fluttering or another way to describe is like something tapping a microphone in my left ear. Initially it was doing it randomly all day but now it happens randomly when I awake for 30-60 seconds at a time for a few times. Then throughout the day it happens when I burp. It doesn’t do it it I sneeze or hear loud noises or when I yawn just when I burp. On the rare occasion in the day it will randomly flutter but mainly is tied to burping. There is no pain or itching but it does feel a little full. Went to the GP and she said ear looks normal. Said to take a decongestant like mucinex. I generally don’t take meds but I do take allergy shots for the last 20 years.



Doctor: Hi.Thanks for your query and an elucidate history.Noted the history of flattering in the left ear for the last 10 days as you have explained.This is occasional and the only additional information is about its relation to burping and little fullness.Also noted your history related to medication. You have tried Mucines and Flonase.Your problem looks to be related to the Eustachian tube dysfunction and inadvertent opening causes the fluttering, the relation to burping indicates this.The reactionary edema and/or fluid in the middle ear causes the feeling of fullness.I would advise you the following:Continue Mucinex and Flonase.Take steam inhalation.Avoid extreme temperature changes.Take anti-inflammatory medicines.Review with an ENT Surgeon to get an exact diagnosis and additional treatment if be required.I hope this answers your query,please feel free to ask further relevant queries.



Comments / Follow Ups

Patient: What is an alternative to anti-inflammatory medicine as I am allergic?

Doctor: Oh, the best alternative is steroid. Is has the strongest anti-inflammatory as well as anti-allergic properties.
Short courses in tapering dosages do help (you need a prescription).
Only contraindication is diabetes and gastric ulcer.
You may please discuss with your Doctor.

Patient: Since its been going on for 10 days now with no signs of stopping, could it be related to a more serious issue or become a permanent condition? Just seems like a very long time to have this which won’t go away on its own. I don’t feel bad although do always have a runny nose due to my allergies. I’m concerned the ear is damaged or could it be a muscle twitch in the ear?

Doctor: It is difficult to say whether this is related to the serious issue or become a permanent condition without proper clinical evaluation and examination by an ENT Surgeon.
but as per the history of runny nose due to allergies, I feel that you need to take proper treatment if you do not want this condition to become permanent or recurrent.
I do not think that the ear is damaged, muscle twitches present in a different way and is extremely rare condition.


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Dr. Jimmy Obaji M.D.

Dr. Jimmy Obaji M.D.

Dr. Jimmy Obaji completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Manitoba. He currently operates a walk-in-clinic in downtown Toronto.

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