Eustachian tube dysfunction

Patients who complain about fullness in the ear are frequently told that it is due to Eustachian tube dysfunction, secondary to allergy or an upper respiratory infection. This is indeed often the case, but for many others the fullness is actually a symptom of an inner ear problem. The two types of patients can be distinguished by otoscopic examination and a tympanogram – if those are both normal, Eustachian tube dysfunction should essentially be ruled out and the clinician should establish whether other symptoms of an inner ear disorder can be elicited, such as dizziness, hearing loss and tinnitus.