- CASE FILE
Chronic stuffy nose and inability to feel air started suddenly when I was 14. Cannot find out what caused it. ENTs are stumped.
ABOUT THIS CASE FILE
Since I was 14 (I'm now 23) I have suffered from stuffy nose and an other issues related to my ability to breathe through my nose, including an inability to feel air as it goes through my nose. It started suddenly. No cause has been found. I had multiple turbinate reduction surgeries over the past 9 years to try and reduce the stuffiness, but my tissues continue to inflame. Now doctors believe I may also have a condition called Empty Nose Syndrome, due to damage from the surgeries to my nerves and tissues., but instead of suffering from "paradoxical nasal congestion" I suffer from actual nasal congestion.
I have always tested negative for allergies and have never noticed a correlation between any environmental factor and my stuffiness. I did have acid reflux - though I didn't experience the typical GERD symptoms. I was tested at the suggestion of an ENT who said that sometimes acid reflux can cause stuffiness. I had a score of 50 on the PH study, followed by a Nissan Fundoplication. My PH score dropped dramatically, but I had no improvement to symptoms.
Recently, I also found out that I have the antibodies to suggest that I had lyme disease at some point in the past, though I never experienced the typical symptoms. I was on doxycycline for acne for a time which coincided with when I developed the nasal congestion. I wonder if the typical symptoms of lyme disease could have been masked by the low dose of doxycycline I was on, but the dosage wasn't high enough to complete eliminate the bacteria, leading to damage that caused my nasal issues.
I haven't breathed a normal breath in 9 years. It never improves to the point of normalcy. I don't even remember what normal breathing feels like anymore. I cannot describe the suffering I am in, but know that it's all I can do to keep on living. I am desperate for any help to solve the mystery of what caused this issue, in the hope that maybe it isn't too late to get some normal function in my nose back.