I was a flight attendant for about 5 months before I ruptured a blood vessel in my right ear. I wasn't flying with a cold, but did fly 12 days in a row with minimum crew rest in between pairings. I was grounded for about 3 months before my doctor allowed me to go back to flying. Ever since the date it ruptured, I have had the feeling of perpetually descending with pressure building up in my ear. My ears havn't re-equalized the pressure since properly either. I flew for 2 more months as a flight attendant before my doctor clipped my wings permanently as of mid January. Flying became very painful early into January as my ears starting not popping anymore. My ENT diagnosed it as a hemotempinum(sp?) from barometric trauma if I remember right. I have had hearing tests done since and there was no damage to my ear drum and my hearing is fine.
I miss flying so much. People have mentioned that there is some surgery available to get tubes put in or something. I am just wondering what the process is, what the side effects are, and what risks are involved?