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Has anyone experienced ringing/buzzing in their ear?

My wife has cirrhosis due to an autoimmune hepatitis and she is experiencing an extremely annoying buzzing static like noise in one ear.   We would appreciate any information or experiences any of you may have had with this I will ask her hepatologist Monday but hoping to get some feed back before then if possible
thanks
4 Responses
446474 tn?1446347682
COMMUNITY LEADER
Hearing issues are not a symptom or complication of cirrhosis. Let her hepatologist known about this issue.  They may refer her to her primary doctor or someone else who specializes in hearing issues to look into the problem.

Common complications of cirrhosis include...
Fatigue
Low platelet count (Thrombocytopenia) - easily bruise and bleed
An enlarged spleen (Splenomegaly)
Enlarge veins along the GI tract (Varices)
Fluid retention and swelling (Ascites and peripheral edema)
Confusion, drowsiness and slurred speech (Hepatic Encephalopathy (HE))
Spider-like red blood vessels on the skin (Spider angioma)
Skin and eyes turning yellow (Jaundice)
Liver Cancer (HepatoCellular Carcinoma (HCC))
Kidney failure
and many others...

Best of luck to you both.
Hector
4 Comments
Thank you for taking time to answer our question.  Unfortunately, we are way too familiar with many of the complications you mention.  As we have never posted here or anywhere for that matter, I will give some background on her condition and if anyone has any input or suggestions please share them with us.

She was sent to a gastroenterologist by our PCP back in 96 or 97  due to some abnormalities in her routine blood work.  the Gastro originally said it was an autoimmune hep and he would need to do biopsy to determine the exact autoimmune disease it was and then he could treat it accordingly.  he later changed his dx to a fatty liver due primarily to child birth and after apx one year he said liver was fine and released her from his care completely.  she had no symptoms or indications of any problem until December  24, 2015 ( she had regular exams by her ob gyn she had surgery in 2010 and no problems at that time or at least no one thought so.  looking back now at her blood work done for surgery there were 2 or 3 very slightly elevated labs i'm talking 1 -2 points is all so caused no one any concern  
We went to ER 12/24/2015 due a nose bleed we were having a difficult time controlling  ER Dr, said her labs indicated early cirrhosis
turns out the gastro's original dx was correct it was autoimmune hepatitis that had now progressed to cirrhosis. we were referred to a hematologist / oncologist by ER Dr I questioned why not a hepatologist or at least gastroenterologist and of course the hematologist agreed completely that we definitely did not need her.  However rather than saying find a gastro Dr  and good luck, she took time to examine my wife, order all the appropriate labs and radiology that a gastro would need ,as well as calling a gastroenterologist who specialized in hepatology and getting my wife in almost immediately to see her.

the gastro Dr told us from Day 1 she would need a TP and the sooner the better as my wife is in very good health other than cirrhosis and that would make TP easier.  She called Piedmont TP center in Atl. Ga (about 2.5hrs from our home) and got her an appt for consultation.  She has now gone through pre screen and inpatient Eval and has been accepted by Piedmont for listing and TP. This just over 60 days after ER trip when we were told of the cirrhosis. she will be listed with UNOS within the next two weeks.

complications so far  include:
Fatigue
low platelet count --90K
slightly enlarged spleen
mild varices (non bleeding)
Ascites
Spider Angioma and
Jaundice in her eyes.

except for the spider angioma these all presented for the firs time from 12/24/15-2/15/15  so they can come on fast and furious so if you experience this realize it is not the end of the world.  while it is scary and a lot to adjust to while waiting on a TP they are manageable and tolerable... not easy but you can do it.
she also had itching and cramps.
her ascites is managed by diuretics and  paracentesis when needed ... with Albumin when necessary her kidney function is normal and want to keep it that way so Albumin is important.

I did discover that a cause of ringing in the ear is a side affect of diuretics.  so while not a direct complication of cirrhosis it is an indirect complication.
sorry for length of this but got to explaining her situation and this is what it ended up thanks again for any input what soever and if I can help anyone in anyway please ask.
ps didn't proof so hopefully it's too rough lol
Thanks for posting the details of your journey to getting a proper diagnosis for your wife's cirrhosis.

I am glad that now your wife is finally getting proper care for her autoimmune hepatitis induced cirrhosis. Unfortunately totally missed or incorrect diagnosis of cirrhosis are not uncommon. At my transplant center we see folk only learning that they have cirrhosis when they are admitted to the ER and are suffering with a life-threatening complication of the disease. This is why we here on this community always suggest that anyone who suspects they or a loved one may have advanced liver disease or cirrhosis, see at minimum see a "good" gastroenterologist or better yet a hepatologist (liver specialist) who works with cirrhotics on a daily basis. That way they can be assured that they will receive a full and proper evaluation and work up for any liver disease they might have.  

While most cases of cirrhosis are obvious to any good doctor, when a person has early compensated cirrhosis, a proper diagnosis can be missed if further full testing is not performed. Meaning a liver biopsy, or FibroSan, and an ultrasound, tests which will detect even early cirrhosis dispute normal lab work and no obvious external physical signs of cirrhosis. Of course a simple one minute physical exam given by a knowledgeable doctor will detect the enlarged spleen and a hardened, abnormally sized  liver as well.

Thankfully she now has a proper diagnosis. It took time but now she is in good hands. Working with her transplant center team will be able to best manage her symptoms and complications until she is able to get a new liver and recover her health. Hopefully soon.

Being listed for transplant in Atlanta is a plus as the waiting list in that part of the country is far shorter then waiting in many parts of the country.

Be well.
Hector
You are absolutely right about finding a good gastro or like you said better yet a hepatologist even if means driving a few hours it really is that important.  I would add that regardless of how "good" the doctor you see is, if there is any thought whatsoever that it is a Hepatitis and they can not positively
identify the hepatitis through lab work, I would INSIST on a liver biopsy and if the doctor refused, I would find a doctor who would do the biopsy-- it could very well mean the difference in a problem you can treat with drugs and live a normal and full life vs a horrific disease with many horrific complications that with out transplantation will be terminal. I say this because the first gastroenterologist my wife saw back in early 2000's is one who specialized in hepatology as well as diseases of the pancreas.  he was/is a professor emeritus and at large medical college
and president of the gastroenterology dept. he had published over 50 articles in the top most respected and peer read medical journals  not to mention he had retired from the military as a Brigadier General who had been in charge of all of the Army's  medical personnel and facilities.  yet he decided a biopsy was not needed. had we insisted on a biopsy she could have been treated for the autoimmune hepatitis with medication and most likely never developed cirrhosis. What a remarkably different journey that would be vs where we are now.  So Please if there is any question do whatever you have to get a definative diagnosis and the gold standard to do this is a liver biopsy.  otherwise you, just like my wife could easily go through life for years with no indications of liver disease at all then suddenly you are fighting for your life.  

I posted this in case someone has had any type of lab work or other reason to think there could be a problem with there liver, no matter how slim the chance,  reads this forum it will cause to get a definitive diagnosis.   while we would love to be able to go back 15-20 yrs. and do things differently..we can't so we don't sit around saying what if...why didn't the dr of why didn't we... that's just a depressing complete waste of time instead we make certain we are very diligent in doing what we can now do ie:transplant, and getting my wife back to good health.  And we will get there thanks to the spectacular medical team she has and especially thanks above all to God. who is in control of everything
I totally agree with you. The "what-ifs" and what "could-have-beens" go on forever. But at a certain point we accept "what is" and carry our lives older and I believe a little wiser than we once were.

I think your words are also an endorsement of getting a second opinion. No matter who "good" and prestige's a doctor credential are they are human like all of us and they do make mistakes. In my opinion a second opinion can never hurt. There is nothing to lose to have another person look at it with fresh eyes. At worse you they confirm what you already know. That's is okay. We accept it and move on. We can then preposition ourselves to look to other causes for our symptoms. Here our primary doctor can play a key role, because their job is to point us to the specialty where our medical issue may lie.  

I am glad you are now in good hands and have learned a lot that with put you both in good stead for what is ahead. It won't be a cake walk but you both are stronger now. Transplant is life changing and no one can prepare you for what is ahead but your persistence and stamina will serve you well. Keep advocating for yourselves and work closely with the transplant team. Develop as close of a personal relationship as you can with your care givers after all those folks are the ones who will save our lives, literally. They like working with good folks that are dedicated to recovering their health and lives. Working with good people like yourselves is why they have dedicated their lives to life and death business of liver transplant.

Be well.
Hector
Avatar universal
You might want to discuss her medications and symptoms with her doctor. My original betablocker medication did cause some hearing issues for me, ringing and loss of about 50% sometimes that would last 10 to 15 mins, then return to normal. Changing the medication fixed this. Just something to check on.
Avatar universal
I have ringing ears and also posted whether this can be due to an advanced liver disease and hector said no again.
I do not know the cause of ringing ears but i think
it is related to bowels or liver.
683231 tn?1467323017
What Causes Tinnitus?

Prolonged exposure to loud sounds is the most common cause of tinnitus. Up to 90% of people with tinnitus have some level of noise-induced hearing loss. The noise causes permanent damage to the sound-sensitive cells of the cochlea, a spiral-shaped organ in the inner ear. Carpenters, pilots, rock musicians, street-repair workers, and landscapers are among those whose jobs put them at risk, as are people who work with chain saws, guns, or other loud devices or who repeatedly listen to loud music. A single exposure to a sudden extremely loud noise can also cause tinnitus.

A variety of other conditions and illnesses can lead to tinnitus, including:

Blockages of the ear due to a buildup of wax, an ear infection, or rarely, a benign tumor of the nerve that allows us to hear (auditory nerve)

Certain drugs -- most notably aspirin, several types of antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, sedatives, and antidepressants, as well as quinine medications; tinnitus is cited as a potential side effect for about 200 prescription and nonprescription drugs.

The natural aging process, which can cause deterioration of the cochlea or other parts of the ear

Meniere's disease, which affects the inner part of the ear

Otosclerosis, a disease that results in stiffening of the small bones in the middle ear

Other medical conditions such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, circulatory problems, anemia, allergies, an underactive thyroid gland, and diabetes

Neck or jaw problems, such as temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome

Injuries to the head and neck

Tinnitus can worsen in some people if they drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, drink caffeinated beverages, or eat certain foods. For reasons not yet entirely clear to researchers, stress and fatigue seem to worsen tinnitus.
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