Another Piece of Great Feedback


Richard thanks for your article. Around July8th, I was surfing, and was tossed straight to the bottom, left side of my head first. The impact, and the hydraulic pressure caused by a earful of seawater caused my eardrum to rip away from the edges, not typical, they say. If you look at a clock face, from 9 o’clock to 4-5o’clock was peeled back, like halfway peeling the seal from a yogurt container foil seal.

I knew what had happened immediately, as I had a very slight traumatic perforation in 1998, when thrown from a Jet Ski. It was two little holes near the middle of the eardrum, which healed on their own. When you perforate your tympanic membrane in water, you lose all sense of balance, the first time in ‘98 I struggled, the recent one I nearly drowned, as the impact was so hard, it sent seawater through my Eustachian Tube and into my throat. I was in 3-4 feet of water and could not stand up, it was a bit scary.

Knowing what had happened, I finally got out of the water, and told my wife, “we have to go to a doctor, I perforated my eardrum”. She gave a weird look, and asked when.

“Now”, I said. We gathered the children, dropped them off with my sister in law and headed to the beach doctor.

Of course they sent a Physician Assistant to come see me. I told her what happened, she looked in my ear, and ZIP, BANG, she was off to find a doctor.

They gave me Vicodin, and some Antibiotic drops, and said it would heal on it’s own. Funny thing, they assumed this without seeing the hole. “We can’t tell how big it is because of all the blood in there, but it’ll be okay”.

A month later, no improvement, and a pending job offer is temporarily declined, until i get it fixed. I go to an ENT. He said the first doctor was a bit negligent with his “it’ll be okay” diagnosis. I was scheduled for Tympanoplasty.

My surgery was today, technically yesterday morning. They were able to use tissue from my Tragus to use as a patch. They also were able to do everything through my ear canal, so I didn’t have to get my ear half cut off to get it fixed; this was relieving.

Right now I’m bandaged like in your picture above. In the morning, I go to see the ENT Doctor/Surgeon (same guy). I have a ton of questions, as it affects my employment, but also stuff like, swimming, flying, sneezing, etc; when can I do those again?

Sorry for the long post, but I’ll come back here with follow up info, as your site was the first to pop up on Google, and was helpful to me. I’m 35 years old by the way. Thank you.


I really enjoyed this feedback. Robert, you’re welcome, and I hope you heal up perfectly! I cannot even imagine what it must have felt like to have that happen. The fact that you knew you had perforated is remarkable.

There are 8 responses to “Another Piece of Great Feedback”

Leave a Reply