The outer ear includes the large skin and cartilage appendages we see on either side of the head the auricle and the ear canal until the eardrum the external auditory canal. When we talk about outer ear pain, most of us are referring to the auricle also known as the pinna although the ear canal is technically part of it. Auricle pain occurs for many reasons and along with redness and swelling it may be among the first symptoms to indicate an ear problem. Sometimes it may be an extension of a problem extending from the middle ear, eardrum or ear canal.
intermittent stabbing pain in ear
Primary Stabbing Headache (Ice Pick Headache) | AMF
Geniculate neuralgia is a condition that is caused by a small nerve the nervus intermedius being compressed by a blood vessel. Geniculate neuralgia results in severe, deep ear pain which is usually sharp—often described as an "ice pick in the ear"—but may also be dull and burning. Doctors will typically prescribe treatment with medication before recommending surgery. Microvascular decompression is a surgical procedure that relieves abnormal compression of a cranial nerve. Surgery to treat geniculate neuralgia is reserved for those patients who are not helped by drug treatments or who experience undesirable side effects from them. UPMC neurosurgeons typically recommend microvascular decompression and cutting the affected nerve. This procedure has minimal side effects.
Primary Stabbing Headache (Ice Pick Headache)
The outer edge of the ear is primarily made up of cartilage, and in some individuals, a sudden sensation of ear cartilage pain may occur. The initial presentation may feel like a pinch or a sharp pain in the outer ear cartilage with not much explanation as to why it occurred in the first place. The external ear consists of tissue, blood vessel, and cartilage, with its main responsibility being a sound receptor for which sound is funneled through the ear canal to the eardrum. Auricular chondritis is a condition where the cartilage of the ear is inflamed. Inflammation is the process in while immune cells of the body react to what they perceive as a foreign invader.
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