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scubakid3
07/17/2014, 01:26 PM
So I have been in Hawaii for the past few days and have come down with a case of swimmers ear. I've gotten them in the past so I did the usual alchohol and vinegar mix so it should help but I'm scheduled to go diving with rays tomorrow. I don't think it'll be a deep dive, 30-40 feet or so, but should I be okay to go diving? I'm really looking forward to this but I don't want to have issues. As far as I have been informed, swimmers ear is external. Will this hinder me in any way? Thanks.

snorvich
07/17/2014, 09:08 PM
Be very careful of reverse squeezes due to inflammation.

ace_92101
07/17/2014, 10:06 PM
I've done that dive and it's shallow. If you're not 100%, I'd pass. I'd check with your doctor first. Some will say it's ok, but I'd check first.

scubakid3
07/18/2014, 02:08 AM
How shallow? And I have antibiotic drops now and I will take Tylenol beforehand. My dive buddy thinks it should be alright and I trust him so I might just go for it and be cautious.

snorvich
07/19/2014, 04:24 PM
How shallow? And I have antibiotic drops now and I will take Tylenol beforehand. My dive buddy thinks it should be alright and I trust him so I might just go for it and be cautious.

Your dive buddy is a doctor? Have you ever had a reverse squeeze? Of course this is an aquarium board . . .

Zoodiver
07/21/2014, 06:14 AM
I wouldn't dive unless I was 100%. There's too much to risk - especially with your ears. I've done some dumb things when I was younger thinking I could sneak by just one more time, and it cost me hearing for awhile.

snorvich
07/21/2014, 12:42 PM
I wouldn't dive unless I was 100%. There's too much to risk - especially with your ears. I've done some dumb things when I was younger thinking I could sneak by just one more time, and it cost me hearing for awhile.

Back in my "passionate diving days", I used various means to dive on days when I realistically should not have. Without going into the medical reasons (because I do not want to encourage using techniques that should not be used), I experienced some equalization problems coming up that were incredibly painful and could have resulted in loss of hearing or worse.

kryppy
07/21/2014, 10:25 PM
On a recent trip to Raja Ampat I dove with flu so terrible I was shivering in my 3mm wetsuit in 89F water so badly I couldn't hold my video camera steady! I was so clogged up I needed three Sudafed's just to blow my nose.... Anyway, It was totally worth it. ;) Hope your dive turned out well.

rjallen
07/22/2014, 09:20 AM
So I have been in Hawaii for the past few days and have come down with a case of swimmers ear. I've gotten them in the past so I did the usual alchohol and vinegar mix so it should help but I'm scheduled to go diving with rays tomorrow. I don't think it'll be a deep dive, 30-40 feet or so, but should I be okay to go diving? I'm really looking forward to this but I don't want to have issues. As far as I have been informed, swimmers ear is external. Will this hinder me in any way? Thanks.
I guess scubakid has either not or has made the dive. I wish you luck. I'm not a doctor but, as an instructor, I have taught somewhere over a 1000 students to dive. The only injury suffered by anyone on my check out dives was to myself. After weekend of checking out students in a large class, I suffered a reverse squeeze. I was due to some careless & rapid equalization during weekend. The pain was excruciating and I had no choice but to surface. I put a hole in my ear drum. I was lucky as it healed without any loss of hearing. This was my fault. My ENT doctor said I was extremely lucky.
This is no joke folks. Ruptured ear drums have caused the death of divers. Cold water entering the middle ear space can cause extreme vertigo & disorientation. Anyone encouraging another to dive with ear problems or other health issues is not your friend.
Happy diving.
RJA

Saltliquid
07/23/2014, 06:42 AM
If it is swimmers ear its fine mate, just get some “aqua ear” in there or what you are making up, straight after the dive. The reverse squeeze doesn’t apply here at all, that’s inner ear, and swimmers ear is outer ear!
I have had both ears operated on for just that from damage from too much cool waters from surfing and diving most of my life from 1969, around Auz from 74 to 77, down south is a killer for your outer ear.
Causal swimmers ear is the cold gets in and the bone reacts between ear drum and out side and builds up and then traps the waters and the dead plankton forms some revolting bacterial issue and the pores open up from it being so wet in there and in goes the bacteria, resulting in swimmers ear. Pools are worse with most folks peeing in there, yuk and in your ear it goes!! Much more goes into local pool waters, but we wont discuss those!
For my first ear op in 81 they took the ear semi off and drilled it out where it is closing up and that takes away some of your hearing just like industrial deafness “ringing in your ears” then they sow it back on and it leaves a tiny scar line at the back of your ear and hopefully they did not cut through the facial nerve that if they do your face droops on that side for ever!
When I came out of theatre my face was drooping the first time and they could not wake me up I was told, it was touch and go that time.
The next one I kept using aqua ear for years and was using a hood and till it was more or less closed up, they did it all in through my ear in 2001, no ear off that time but still left with some ringing as well.
At my worst both ears closed up and I was deaf except sounds through my scull for three days.
A squeeze is with your sinuses or antrums, where I did my junior dive course a poor guy came clambering out onto rocks in total panic when I was a young teenager one day as his mask was half full of blood from a squeeze he tolerated going down and it burst blood vessels on the way back up as the snot cork would not move! That expanding air had to go somewhere or do some damage, its better then two times I think it has happened when that compressed air building in the sinuses explodes through the flesh propelling all those tiny bones behind the nose into the brain!
Any one who reads this for heavens sake, if the water you surf, free dive or scuba dive in is below 22c, wear a hood for divers or suitable ear plugs for surfers only!
In Auz the way we drive puts our right ear near the window, so possibly earlier or by old age most drivers who drive with the window down in cool temps will have it to some degree in that ear!

rjallen
07/23/2014, 08:02 AM
If it is swimmers ear its fine mate, just get some “aqua ear” in there or what you are making up, straight after the dive. The reverse squeeze doesn’t apply here at all, that’s inner ear, and swimmers ear is outer ear!
I have had both ears operated on for just that from damage from too much cool waters from surfing and diving most of my life from 1969, around Auz from 74 to 77, down south is a killer for your outer ear.
Causal swimmers ear is the cold gets in and the bone reacts between ear drum and out side and builds up and then traps the waters and the dead plankton forms some revolting bacterial issue and the pores open up from it being so wet in there and in goes the bacteria, resulting in swimmers ear. Pools are worse with most folks peeing in there, yuk and in your ear it goes!! Much more goes into local pool waters, but we wont discuss those!
For my first ear op in 81 they took the ear semi off and drilled it out where it is closing up and that takes away some of your hearing just like industrial deafness “ringing in your ears” then they sow it back on and it leaves a tiny scar line at the back of your ear and hopefully they did not cut through the facial nerve that if they do your face droops on that side for ever!
When I came out of theatre my face was drooping the first time and they could not wake me up I was told, it was touch and go that time.
The next one I kept using aqua ear for years and was using a hood and till it was more or less closed up, they did it all in through my ear in 2001, no ear off that time but still left with some ringing as well.
At my worst both ears closed up and I was deaf except sounds through my scull for three days.
A squeeze is with your sinuses or antrums, where I did my junior dive course a poor guy came clambering out onto rocks in total panic when I was a young teenager one day as his mask was half full of blood from a squeeze he tolerated going down and it burst blood vessels on the way back up as the snot cork would not move! That expanding air had to go somewhere or do some damage, its better then two times I think it has happened when that compressed air building in the sinuses explodes through the flesh propelling all those tiny bones behind the nose into the brain!
Any one who reads this for heavens sake, if the water you surf, free dive or scuba dive in is below 22c, wear a hood for divers or suitable ear plugs for surfers only!
In Auz the way we drive puts our right ear near the window, so possibly earlier or by old age most drivers who drive with the window down in cool temps will have it to some degree in that ear!

I am very aware of the ear structure and, while never having such a personal experience- sounds horrible, I have probably seen more ear issues in my students than some general practice physicians.
1. Swimmers ear can be confined to the outer ear but CAN spread into the middle ear structure through the tempanic membrane. Ear pain on equalization can be caused by many issues. The person affected usually cannot tell the difference. There are many organisms that can present swimmer's ear symptoms. Some of these bugs are benign and some will produce severe pain and need immediate medical treatment. An Otoscope is needed to confirm diagnosis and a culture, in some instances, may be needed. Just because you and your dive buddy THINK it's swimmers ear, does not make it so. If there is pain on equalization, there is inflammation of the middle ear and/or Eustachian Tube.
2. A dive for most is just a recreational experience. As much as I love diving it not worth risking your hearing. No offense but your terrible ear issues, if my reading of above is accurate, seem to be the direct result of prolonged and repeated exposures after the condition first developed. Waiting to re-enter the water until the infection settled down may have prevented such a chronic condition. An you're right, swimming pools are full of bugs. Over the counter medicatons can be a good preventative measure and MAY help the body heal from mild cases. I don't know of any physician who will make blanket statements such telling someone with ear pain "no worries- go ahead and dive".
As I read your comment, I must ask you. Are you a troll? If so you got me but I want to make sure everyone understands the risks involved.

RJA

snorvich
07/23/2014, 02:42 PM
I agree with RJA and disagree with liquidg. I suggest reading the fatality reports published by DAN and the causes that were isolated. However it is your life and your health, so you should do what you want. And I have dived both warm and cold waters extensively including those around Australia and related areas. My avatar is an image captured around Kangaroo Island.

mbauma
08/04/2014, 04:47 PM
Try the dive and if you get any pain beyond the normal clearing type, I would not go.

snorvich
08/05/2014, 08:22 AM
Try the dive and if you get any pain beyond the normal clearing type, I would not go.

Going down is not the problem; coming up is the problem.

mbauma
08/05/2014, 02:21 PM
I always have problems going down, never coming up.

snorvich
08/05/2014, 07:41 PM
I always have problems going down, never coming up.

Going down, you may not be equalizing frequently enough and can usually be fixed by rising a bit and re-equalizing, then continuing to descend. This issue more often occurs as a problem with people who are relatively "new" to diving.

The OP had some "ear issues" which may be ameliorated with medication. The problem is that coming up, he may encounter a reverse squeeze which is incredibly painful and potentially very dangerous.