Diseases & Conditions

At Camino ENT Clinic, we take hearing and ear health very seriously. We have a team of surgeons and audiologists to help with the full spectrum of ear- and hearing-related problems from ear infections to cochlear implants.

Hearing Loss

Hearing loss is a growing health concern in San Jose and across the U.S., with an estimated 48 million Americans currently living with impaired hearing. Hearing loss affects people of all ages. Camino ENT is equipped to test hearing at any age. As we get older, hearing loss can lead to social isolation, depression and the inability to detect dangerous situations. Camino ENT can offer testing, hearing protection and hearing aids to meet your hearing healthcare needs.

Pediatric Hearing Loss

Children are not immune to hearing loss. Early intervention is crucial, as impaired hearing can lead to developmental delays. Poor speech and language skills may affect academic performance and often results in a lack of social and emotional skills, as well. The staff at Camino ENT can help assess your child for hearing loss and provide treatment to help ensure academic and social success. Please consult the California Academy of Audiology’s brochure, My Baby Has a Hearing Loss: A Starting Guide for Parents (see the link for a free download below) for helpful information and a list of resources devoted to helping your child learn and grow.

Sudden Hearing Loss

In rare cases, patients develop hearing loss in one or both ears suddenly or over just a few hours or days. Rapid hearing changes are considered a medical emergency and anyone experiencing sudden hearing loss should visit the Camino ENT team of physicians and audiologists for assessment as soon as possible. If you develop sudden hearing loss with or without symptoms of dizziness (vertigo) or ear ringing (tinnitus), rapid and appropriate treatment can make the difference between recovery and permanent ear damage.

Single-Sided Hearing Loss

While symmetric hearing loss in both ears is more common, unilateral (single-sided) hearing loss is a prevalent problem amongst patients across the U.S. Unilateral hearing loss can be caused by many things, including illness, chemotherapy, trauma or surgery complications. Loss of hearing in one ear or asymmetric hearing loss, may represent a more serious problem such as a skull base tumor or acoustic neuroma. Asymmetric loss can also affect your balance and ability to localize sounds. There are often treatments for these conditions. Let the Camino ENT team show you your options.

Cholesteatoma

Cholesteatomas are abnormal growth of skin cells behind the eardrum that can cause serious permanent damage to your hearing, balance and brain. A comprehensive evaluation with an ENT surgeon and an audiologist is critical to treatment and recovery. Symptoms include fluid drainage, pressure in the ear, hearing loss, vertigo, meningitis and headache. Treatment varies depending on the size and stage of development but often includes both medical and surgical methods.

Otosclerosis

Otosclerosis is estimated to affect 1 in 10 South Bay residents. It is a cause of conductive hearing loss or hearing loss caused by restricted motion of the ear bones—or ossicles—specifically, the stapes bone. The stapes is one of the smallest bones in the body, but even small changes can damage the hearing. Otosclerosis is more common in men and amongst people of certain ethnicities but can occur in anyone at any age. There are both surgical and nonsurgical treatment options offered by the specialists at Camino ENT.

Tinnitus

Tinnitus or a ringing in the ears, is a common symptom that affects millions of people in California and worldwide. Approximately 10–15% of the population will experience ear ringing at some point in their lives. Some tinnitus is benign and self-resolves. Some ringing can indicate more serious problems, such as infection, tumor or trauma. It has a wide range of possible causes, but the exact source of many patients’ symptoms is often unknown. If you begin experiencing tinnitus, it’s important to see an audiologist for an assessment to check for a potentially serious underlying condition. Tinnitus is not often cured; however, Camino ENT offers a range of treatment and therapy options to effectively manage your symptoms.

Dizziness & Vertigo

True vertigo is a sensation of motion when you are not moving. It may be anything from rocking to spinning. Experts estimate that 40% of Americans will experience moderate to severe dizziness or vertigo that requires a doctor’s care at some point. Vertigo can be neurological cardiac or ear related. Many medications for heart disease can cause vertigo. Let us help guide you to the correct specialist for your problem. We offer balance testing, ear diagnostics and treatments for vertigo at Camino ENT. We work with a team of specialists in multiple fields to find you the answers you need.

Ménière's Disease

Ménière’s disease is an inner-ear disorder that involves a cluster of symptoms including vertigo, fluctuating hearing loss, pressure, tinnitus and headaches. Ménière’s is a chronic condition, but an early diagnosis and treatment plan are vital to managing symptoms and reducing this disorder’s impact on your day-to-day life. There are medical treatments and lifestyle modifications that can dramatically improve your functionality and quality of life.

Swimmer's Ear/Otitis Externa

Outer ear infections—also known as swimmer’s ear or otitis externa—affect the ear canal and are usually bacterial or fungal in nature. They are most often caused by excessive water exposure, though they can also result from inserting foreign objects like cotton swabs, jewelry or chemicals into the ear canal. Swimmer’s ear requires prompt medical treatment. If you’re experiencing itching, redness, discharge or ear discomfort, please see us at Camino ENT.

Surfer's Ear/Exostosis

The condition known as surfer’s ear, also called exostosis, describes an abnormal bone growth in the ear canal that can result in a narrowing of the outer ear, ear infections and hearing loss. Surfer’s ear is commonly caused by prolonged exposure to cold water or wind. It is preventable by using quality earmolds for protection. Surfer’s ear can be managed if symptoms are mild, but many cases require surgery. To prevent exostosis, Camino ENT offers both standard and custom plug options for your ear protection needs.

Otitis Media

Middle ear infections or otitis media, are most common in young children but can occur in anyone at any age. Middle ear infections are commonly viral or bacterial and they usually cause pain and inflammation. Untreated otitis media can cause discomfort, headache, hearing loss and even meningitis. Treatment generally involves medication and cleaning of the ear. It may require surgical drainage and repair. Recurrent ear infections may be a symptom of a more serious illness. Come see us at Camino ENT if you, your child or someone else you care for is affected by troublesome ear infections.

Acoustic Neuromas

An acoustic neuroma is a benign tumor of the inner ear and skull base. They generally grow slowly at a rate of 1 millimeter a year but may accelerate as they enlarge. They arise from the cells that cover the seventh cranial nerve, which connects the ear and brain. Symptoms can develop subtly and include hearing loss, tinnitus and a feeling of pressure in one ear. Additional symptoms develop as the tumor grows including vertigo, headaches, facial weakness and confusion. Surgeons at Camino ENT work with audiologists, neurosurgeons and radiation oncology physicians to provide comprehensive treatment for these tumors.

Eustachian Tube Dysfunction (ETD)

The Eustachian tube is a muscular, funnel-shaped tube that connects the middle ear to the back of the nose. Eustachian tube dysfunction refers to any problem that alters how this tube opens and closes, which in turn affects pressure and fluid balance for the ear. The Eustachian tube changes in shape and position as we age and problems can be different in adults and children. Common causes of ETD include allergy, rapid weight loss, infection, enlarged adenoids and sinus disease.