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Pain In Ear And Throat When Swallowing

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Management Of Eagle Syndrome

Difficulty Swallowing | Daniel Fink, MD, Ear, Nose and Throat | UCHealth

No surgery is risk-free, and not all styloidectomies work. Some people may choose to find other strategies to manage their symptoms or do not get relief from surgery.

Some strategies that may help with pain management include:

  • pain medication, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • steroid injections
  • alternative and complementary medicine

Eagle syndrome is a type of nerve pain, meaning that there is not an injury to the painful area. As a result, massage, exercise, and other strategies that target the painful area are unlikely to help.

A doctor may suspect Eagle syndrome based on the symptoms that a person presents. However, it is essential that doctors rule out other possible causes of pain in this area of the body, such as:

  • tooth pain radiating to the neck
  • problems with nearby blood vessels
  • herniated discs

A doctor may ask about symptoms, take a complete medical history, and perform a physical examination. Imaging studies, such as X-rays, can help a doctor view the styloid process and surrounding structures.

In some cases, a doctor may be able to feel an unusually long styloid process pushing into the throat.

About 80 percent of people who seek treatment for Eagle syndrome get relief, regardless of the treatment they receive.

For people who undergo surgery, the outlook may be even better. According to one study , around 95 percent of people receiving endoscopic surgery for Eagle syndrome said that their symptoms were either wholly or partially relieved.

Throat Symptoms: What’s Causing Your Hoarseness

When you speak, air moving through your vocal cords causes vibrations and results in sound. When all the working parts dont come together properly, your voice can sound strained, raspy, or hoarse. Hoarseness happens for a number of reasons your vocal cords can be swollen from a cold virus or laryngitis . However, prolonged hoarseness can also indicate a serious problem, such as cancer, so see an ENT specialist if your symptoms don’t go away.

What Are The Potential Complications Of Earache

Complications associated with an earache can be progressive and vary depending on the underlying cause. Because an earache can be due to serious diseases, failure to seek treatment can result in complications and permanent damage.

Its important to visit your healthcare provider when you experience any persistent symptoms that concern you. Once the underlying cause is diagnosed, following the treatment plan can lower your risk of potential complications including:

  • Recurrent ear infections

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How Can I Treat Earache At Home

You can ask your pharmacist about using over-the-counter painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen to treat the pain. Children under the age of 16 should not take aspirin.

Placing a warm flannel against the affected ear may also help relieve the pain.

Your pharmacist may also be able to recommend over-the-counter eardrops for your earache. But let them know your symptoms and ask for their advice first.

Eardrops or olive oil drops should not be used if the eardrum has burst, and they will not help an ear infection.

If you or your child has an ear infection, you should avoid putting objects in the ear, such as cotton buds, or getting the affected ear wet.

What To Do If You Have A Sore Throat And Ear Pain

What Causes Ear Pain When Swallowing? (with pictures)

Urgent Care

Many things can cause a sore throat, a cold being the most common. Similarly, ear pain has some underlying causes, including allergies and sinus infections. Generally, a sore throat is not a cause for concern and will improve within a few days. However, sore throat and ear pain occurring together may indicate a condition that may require medical assistance.

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Why Is It Painful To Swallow 7 Possible Causes

We take swallowing for granted. It comes naturally and can be an annoyance when it becomes painful. Not only is swallowing an automatic response to drinking and eating, but you frequently swallow your saliva throughout the day. Whenever your throat feels scratchy, you most likely gear up with throat lozenges or herbal teas to ease the pain.

Not all sore throats cause painful swallowing, and not all swallowing issues derive from bacterial infections. While theres a low chance your swallowing issues are a severe health risk, its always better to be safe than sorry.

The doctors at Allergy & ENT Associates specialize in treating all ENT disorders and want you to know the varying causes of a sore throat and painful swallowing. Here are seven possible reasons why its painful to swallow.

Nose Problems: How To Stop Nosebleeds

Nosebleeds happen due to a number of different causes dry air, allergies, colds, migraine headaches, even cocaine use. Sometimes a nosebleed can be due to blood clotting disorders or being on blood-thinning medication. To stop a nosebleed, sit and lean forward slightly. Dont recline keeping your head above your heart slows the bleeding and allows the blood to come out through your nose, instead of going down your throat. Squeeze the soft portion of your nose between the tip and the bridge with your index finger and thumb and hold until the bleeding stops. Seek medical help if the bleeding doesn’t stop.

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What Causes An Earache

In children, an earache is most likely due to a middle ear infection, but it can also be caused by irritating substances in the ear and other conditions. A middle ear infection often follows an upper respiratory infection, such as the common cold.

In adults, ear pain is often due to disorders and conditions in another area that spread to the ear. This is due to the variety of nerves and connective tissues that are shared by other head and neck structures. Ear pain when swallowing is often caused by a blocked eustachian tube, sore throat, or sinusitis. In some cases, an earache is a symptom of a serious infection or other condition that should be evaluated as soon as possible or in an emergency setting.

Ear Problems: Too Much Ear Wax

How to manage sore throat with pain while swallowing? – Dr. Sriram Nathan

Ear wax is a natural protector against infections, explains Jones, and you should never try to remove it or you may end up pushing the wax further in and needing to have it removed by an ear, nose, and throat specialist. I had 15 people in my office this morning, and four were here for impacted ear wax, he says. Ear wax will come out naturally on its own, and constantly removing it can disturb the wax-producing glands.

However, in some cases, excessive ear wax can accumulate in the ear canal, possibly causing ear pain, a plugged sensation in the ear, itching, ear odor even hearing loss. If you want a way to keep ear wax to a minimum, says Jones, you can try flushing your ears by putting a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in each ear once a week. The wax will then come out on its own. But, Jones warns, this advice is for patients who know their ears are healthy. We dont want someone with a perforation to do that.”

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How Is Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia Treated

In most situations, anticonvulsant drugs are the first line of treatment. If drug therapy is not effective or if a patient has troublesome side effects from the medication, surgery is considered.


  • Anticonvulsants: Carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, phenytoin, gabapentin, pregabalin, and other antiseizure medications are often prescribed for GPN.
  • Antidepressants: Amitriptyline and other antidepressant drugs are sometimes prescribed for use along with anticonvulsants to treat individuals who become depressed due to debilitating pain.
  • Anesthetics: Local anesthetics may be injected to block the nerve or applied topically to areas where pain occurs .


Several surgical procedures may be options in alleviating the pain associated with GPN. The most common of these is microvascular decompression as explained below. If a tumor is found compressing the nerve or if Eagle syndrome is diagnosed , then a different type of surgery may be warranted.

  • National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia Information Page Accessed 6/17/2019.
  • Slavin KV. Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia. Seminars in Neurosurgery 2001 15:71-79. Accessed 6/17/2019.
  • Merck Manual Consumer Version. Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia. Accessed 6/17/2019.
  • Singh PM, Kaur M, Trikha A. An uncommonly common: Glossopharyngeal neuralgia. Ann Indian Acad Neurol 2013 16:1-8. Accessed 6/17/2019.

Sore Throat And Ear Pain

Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Having a sore throat and ear pain at the same time is common because these parts of your body are connected by the Eustachian tube.

When there is a problem in your ears, nose, or throat , the link between these parts means it’s more likely you’ll also have symptoms in more than one.

Throat pain is a common symptom of a cold or the flu. When throat pain occurs with ear pain, the causes can include allergies, infections, or tonsillitis.

Verywell / Nez Riaz

This article will go over the different causes of sore throat and ear pain, how the symptoms can be treated, and when to see a provider for them.

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Some Cancers And Cancer Treatments

Painful swallowing isn’t likely to be cancer. But it can be a symptom of throat and esophageal cancers. You might feel pain when swallowing as a tumor grows and the passageway gets narrower.

If you’ve had this symptom for a while and you’re starting to feel like you need to eat soft food in tiny bites, see your doctor. You may need to get an imaging test of the upper part of your digestive system.

Some treatments for various types of cancer can also make it hurt to swallow. Chemotherapy or radiation to the head, neck, or upper chest can inflame the lining of the mouth, throat, or esophagus. Other symptoms include dry mouth or swelling. If you’re having these problems while you get your cancer treatment, try eating softer foods, blender drinks, soups, and purees. Also, cold foods can be soothing, while very spicy foods can hurt more. This pain should stop soon after you’re done with your cancer treatment.

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Diagnosing Sore Throat And Ear Pain

Based on your symptoms, you may be able to start narrowing down the root of your pain. Symptoms for sore throat and ear pain include:

  • A dry or scratchy feeling in the back of your throat
  • Pain when you swallow or talk
  • Redness in the back of your throat
  • White patches on your tonsils
  • A popping sound in the ear
  • Your ear feeling like its full
  • Fluid draining from the ear

Once you have nailed down your issues, you may be able to pinpoint one of the following root causes.

How Does Tmj Affect Your Ears

Your ears have a tube that runs from the middle ear connecting it to the rear of the nose. They are called your eustachian tubes. These tubes regulate the pressure in your middle ears. They are also responsible for moving fluid out of your middle ears, preventing infection. A TMJ disorder can cause this area of the ear to stop working properly, resulting in ear pain and congestion.

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How To Know If You Have A Nose Or Throat Infection

Nose and throat infections are other possible causes of ear pain when swallowing.

When germs are picked up by the nose and mouth, it causes the adenoids to grow.

As the adenoids continue to grow, they eventually block the tubes within the ear, resulting in ear pain.

Children are more likely to suffer from ear pain due to a nose or throat infection since adenoids are largest when youre young.

If youre dealing with a nose or throat infection, you may experience a dry, scratchy throat, redness at the back of the mouth, swollen glands, throat pain, a cough and bad breath.

Life Threatening Complications Of Gpn

Ear, Nose, and Throat â Otalgia (Ear Pain): By Russell Hollins M.D.

Harris et al. reported that GPN could be associated with cardiac dysrhythmia and instability. This relationship is well-accepted and has been documented by many authors. The various reports and case studies have been compiled and summarized by Ferrante et al. Intense irritability and hyper-stimulation of glossopharyngeal nerve feedback onto the nucleus of the tractus solitarius of the midbrain and via collaterals reach the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus nerve. This activation of this abnormal loop during severe neuralgic pain would be responsible for heightened vagal response as cardiac dysrhythmia, bradycardia, and hypotension, with cerebral hypoxia, slowing of EEG activity, syncope, and convulsions. Convulsive movements, limb clonus, automatic smacking movements of the lips, and upward turning of the eyes are signs of cerebral hypoxia induced by the bradycardia. The cardiovascular phenomenon is seen during the pain attack or immediately following it. Both pharmacotherapy and surgical treatment eliminates these. There is a subset of patients with demonstrable cardiac manifestations without typical neuralgic symptoms who have responded very well to glossopharyngeal nerve avulsion or MVD. Such syndromes have been called non-neuralgic GPN, in recognition of the fact that glossopharyngeal nerve irritability may not always give rise to a pain.

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Why Do I Get An Earache When Chewing And Swallowing

When you have an earache, you probably naturally assume it is caused by infection. Oftentimes it is. But, if its on-going, or, if your doctor isnt able to treat it successfully, it could be caused by TMJ. If you have a bad bite, damaged or missing teeth, teeth worn from grinding or an underdeveloped jaw, your jaw muscles work overtime. Once they tire, they recruit you to face head and neck muscles to help out. As these muscles become overworked, they tighten up and can put pressure on the nerves that run through them. This is why its common to get an earache when chewing and swallowing. The overworked muscles are the root cause of TMJ symptoms like migraines or ear pain when swallowing.

Nose Problems: Clearing Up Phlegm In The Throat

Constant phlegm in the throat often called post-nasal drip has many possible causes, including pollution, dust, or an anatomical obstruction. The nose produces a quart of mucus daily, and you will notice a change when theres more of it or if its thicker. An increase in mucus production is usually due to an infection or an obstruction, which the body wants to flush out. If mucus is too thick, a medication like Mucinex can make the mucus thinner so that its more easily swallowed.

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Cold Flu Or Sinus Infection

A sore throat that causes painful swallowing often signals that youâre getting one of these common illnesses. It can start a day before other symptoms like a runny nose and cough.

If it’s a cold, you’ll need to wait it out by sipping fluids and getting plenty of rest. If it might be the flu, which feels much worse and is a lot more serious than a cold, you need to see a doctor.

With a sinus infection, constantly trying to clear your throat of drainage can cause irritation and painful swallowing until the infection clears.

A Robot Instead Of Chemotherapy

ENT Specialists

According to him, “the accepted theory is that chronic and years-long infection with the papilloma virus may cause some people to develop pharyngeal cancer. These patients will often suffer from sore throat, ear pain, difficulty or pain in eating or drinking, weight loss, blood from the pharyngeal cavity, or neck swelling “.

If the conventional treatment so far for patients with pharyngeal cancer has been through radiation treatments or chemoradiation with a good response to treatment, over the years late complications of radiation have been observed such as: damage to the swallowing muscles, difficulty in drinking and eating actions that led the patients to depend on enteral feeding which caused them a serious impairment in quality Life.

Therefore, in recent years, another solution has been sought.

Sore throat, pain in the ear, difficulty eating or drinking, weight loss or neck swelling

This solution came through the da Vinci robot, which allows safe removal of the tumor.

“Robotic surgery allows for precise work in a very small space and enables a close-up approach to the tumor with significant magnification by a 3D vision system, which enables complete resection of tumors that cannot always be seen,” explained Dr. Jobran.

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