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Patulous Eustachian Tube (PET) Syndrome

What is Patulous Eustachian Tube Syndrome?

It is a physical disorder in which Eustachian Tube stays open, normally it remains closed. When this occurs, the person experiences autophony which means hearing self-generated sounds.

How do I know I have PET?

Some signs and symptoms of PET are a sense of fullness in the ears, hearing your own voice, breathing or bodily functions very loudly. A person can feel vibrations on the ear drum which creates a “bucket on the head” sensation. The ear feels dry with no clogged feeling or sinus pressure.

What are some causes of PET?

The causes of PET are unknown. However, there are several factors that may predispose one to develop PET. These factors may include, weight loss, pregnancy, neurologic disorders (such as stroke), multiple sclerosis, and motor neuron disease. Use of certain medications such as oral contraceptives or diuretics can also contribute to the development of PET. Other causes are fatigue, stress, anxiety, exercise, and temporomandibular joint syndrome (TMJ).

How do I treat PET?

The treatment varies based on predisposing factors. There is no FDA-approved treatment for PET. Some experts use the following treatment options:

Estrogen nasal drops (saturated KI) can be used to induce edema of the ET opening.

Nasal sprays containing diluted HCL, chlorobutanol, and benzyl alcohol can be used for temporary treatment. Surgeries will be the last option.

Avoid medications that causes PET

Specific lifestyle guidance like drinking more water in summer or after exercise, avoiding weight loss, and avoiding nasal decongestants and caffeine. Try to ignore loud voices when watching TV or listening to the radio.

Niyati Patel, PharmD Candidate 2023


  1. Eustachian tube dysfunction. Eustachian Tube Dysfunction | Johns Hopkins Medicine. Published April 12, 2022. Accessed November 14, 2022.
  2. C; KPS. Current treatment options for patulous eustachian tube: A review of the literature. Ear, nose, & throat journal. Accessed November 14, 2022.
  3. Ikeda R, Kikuchi T, Oshima H, Kobayashi T. Management of Patulous Eustachian Tube. JMA J. 2020;3(2):101-108. doi:10.31662/jmaj.2020-0007

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