Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Information and Resources

Font Size

Hearing Loss or Dizziness With an Ear Canal Problem

Hearing loss and dizziness are not commonly caused by ear canal problems. Significant hearing loss or vertigo may mean a more serious condition that requires medical evaluation.

  • Minimal hearing loss may occur if the ear canal becomes blocked with earwax, swelling of the canal, or thick drainage.
  • People often feel lightheaded or as if they might pass out when they are ill. This is different, however, from vertigo, which is a feeling that you or your surroundings are moving when there is no actual movement. The motion is commonly described as a spinning or whirling sensation, but it can also include sensations of falling or tilting. Vertigo can cause nausea, vomiting, the inability to walk or stand, or falls with the possibility of injury.

Both vertigo and lightheadedness can be caused by ear canal problems, especially if these sensations occur with a viral infection or allergy symptoms. Vertigo is common with inner ear disorders, such as labyrinthitis, Ménière's disease, an injury to the ear or head, or a noncancerous growth in the space behind the eardrum (cholesteatoma).

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerH. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
Last RevisedJanuary 9, 2012

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 09, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

Hot Topics

WebMD Video: Now Playing

Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

feet
Solutions for 19 types.
row of colored highlighter pens
Tips for living better.
build a better butt
How to build a better butt.
man with indigestion
How to keep yours at bay.
MS Overview
Recognizing symptoms.
stressed working woman
And how to fix them?
brain scan with soda
Tips to kick the habit.
richly colored hair
What your hair says about your health?
Woman running
10 ways to boost your metabolism.
lone star tick
How to identify that bite.
young woman in sun
What to watch for.
Girl drinking orange juice
What's in your glass?

Pollen counts, treatment tips, and more.

It's nothing to sneeze at.

Loading ...

Sending your email...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.

Thanks!

Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.