I blogged, earlier, about a chronic earache I'd been having, and instructions from the doctor to blow air through my ears. It didn't work. I was referred to an ENT (Ears/Nose/Throat) specialist, whom I saw yesterday.
After a hearing test, poking and prodding of every orifice in my head ensued. Then the doctor pulled out a little spray gun, and informed me he was going to numb the inside of my nose. And then a different spray gun (I hope) to numb my throat. He warned me, "this stuff doesn't taste very good." It sure did not; I couldn't keep myself from shuddering and spitting the word "Gyak!"
He left the room for about 5 minutes to let that rat-poison numbing crap take effect, leaving me to wonder WHY we were numbing things up.
He returned and took another peek up each nose-hole, and then tapped around on my teeth and tonsils with a few instruments. I was innocently thinking "well, that was nothing! I'm pretty sure I could have tolerated that without all of this numbing stuff! Sheesh."
It was then that he said "I'm just going to put this light down your throat and take a look."
I opened wide: Ahhhhh....
To my surprise, he inserted a cord into my NOSE, as he said, "this is just a little light."
"Wow," I was thinking, "that must be one bright light. You put it in my nose, and it lights up my entire head so much that you can see my throat? Well. Ain't technology grand!"
But he kept pushing that thing further and further in, all the while talking about my throat, and it finally dawned on me: "Holy shit. He is going to snake that thing through my head!!!" And he proceded to do just that, until I felt it poke into my throat.
For the record, it is quite unsettling to feel a cord winding right through a bypass in your head in which you had never been physically aware. So unsettling that I didn't even think of getting a photo of it for my blog!
Please say "eeeeeeeeeeeee" the doctor said.
I made some a guttural noise that sounded more like "cckkkkkkkkkkeeeehhhhhhhhhh" than "eeeeee" but he said that was fine anyway.
And then the retraction, which was just as creepy as the insertion, but at least it was over.
And here's the final diagnosis:
I don't have an Ear, Nose, or Throat problem.
I have TMJ: Temporo-Mandibular Joint dysfunction. I actually had therapy for this some years ago, and haven't had problems with it since then. Until now. Essentially, the jaw joint on the left side of my face is so inflamed that it's give me one hell of an earache, for 4 months.
I walked away with a prescription, and instructions to see an oral surgeon if it doesn't cause any relief.
In summary I've had 3 doctor appointments, $90 worth of co-pays, one roto-rooting through my head, and I got a prescription for:
Wish me (and yourselves) luck that I don't blog about this again.