Medical Specialty >> Rheumatology

Doctors Lounge - Rheumatology Answers

Back to Rheumatology Answers List

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Doctors Lounge (www.doctorslounge.com) does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Site.

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on www.doctorslounge.com is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician. Please read our 'Terms and Conditions of Use' carefully before using this site.

Date of last update: 8/21/2017.

Forum Name: Rheumatology Topics

Question: Ear cartiledge pain


 kash - Fri Jan 13, 2006 5:17 pm

Hello,
This one should be funny....I'm 42, but since I was a child I often wake up with absolutely excruiating pain in my outer ear. This is always after being on my side. The pain is so horrible that I can hardly move my head after I've pulled my ear from the pillow. I gently rub and pull on my lobes and wait for the blood to flow again. The pain subsides after that, but it isn't immediate. I often have residual pain well into the next day and beyond. About a year ago I started using one of those memory foam pillows and I've notice that this ear pain occurs almost nightly. I assume it's due to lost circulation, but I would expect to feel numbness rather than severe pain. As I said, I remember this going back to my childhood, but it's just recently that it has escalated.

Thanks.
 Dr. P. M. Aries - Sun Jan 15, 2006 3:12 pm

User avatar There are diseases that involve the cartilage of the ear, but they are due to inflammation and are mostly only a symptom of an other disease. But the way you are describing it, it sounds more like circulation problems. Does it happen in the winter when you are going outside ?
 kash - Sun Jan 15, 2006 6:33 pm

No, it's only when I've been asleep on my side. Once I get the blood flowing again it's still tender, but not so painful that I can't turn over and lay on the other ear. I don't try to lay on that ear for a while though!
 pt_i_am - Thu Feb 15, 2007 5:37 pm

Wow! I had that as a child too! However now I have it most every day and sometimes it is very severe. I have told the doctors, but they don't seem to get it! One told me that I have TMJ, which I know that I have it and have been treated for it. But my ear feels hot and very painful to touch.
 kash - Fri Feb 16, 2007 12:27 pm

Exactly! I was beginning to think I was the only one. At 3 a.m. today I cringed as I unstuck my ear from the pillow, turned my head very slowly and rubbed and pulled my lobe until it started to subside. I swear it's like I've been sleeping on a suction cup!

I don't what TMJ would have to do with it...definitely not in the jaw area...just on the outside...it's crazy!

| Check a doctor's response to similar questions

Are you a Doctor, Pharmacist, PA or a Nurse?

Join the Doctors Lounge online medical community

  • Editorial activities: Publish, peer review, edit online articles.

  • Ask a Doctor Teams: Respond to patient questions and discuss challenging presentations with other members.

Doctors Lounge Membership Application

Tools & Services: Follow DoctorsLounge on Twitter Follow us on Twitter | RSS News | Newsletter | Contact us