My appointment today at new ENT

I recently decided to get a second opinion about my diagnosis of ES. I live in the Raleigh / Durham NC area. I have bilateral ossification of the stylohyoid ligaments according to a CT scan I had. I originally was diagnosed with ES due to the ossification not knowing about my styloid bones - whether they were elongated or bent.

First I will say that if you’re anywhere near North Carolina and you’re struggling to find a doctor, Dr. Matthew Ellison with Duke Otolaryngology is hands down fantastic. He said he has done many styloidectomy’s and treated people many with ES. I told him I found him through the forum. He spent the most time with me than any doctor ever has, I think. He. is. Fabulous.

Second, he does not believe I have ES considering after showing me the CT images, my styloid bones are slightly elongated but I have no other symptoms and the bones are not pushing on anything so they are not an issue. He said if they were bent or very long he’d remove them. But, I have no neck pain, only dysphagia. My earlier diagnosis of ES was probably more from the radiologist suggesting it to my ENT at that time due to the ossification. Hopefully with the therapy the dysphagia will go away.

Long story short he diagnosed me with Muscular Tension Dysphagia and recommended voice therapy. He did another scope that was very detailed and it was the result that caused him to make the diagnosis. My throat muscles are very tense for whatever reason.

The people on this forum are so wonderful and I truly hope the best for everyone here. I hope you are able to find good doctors where you live. If you are within driving distance of Raleigh, NC it is more than worth the drive to go see Dr. Ellison at Duke Otolaryngology.

Thank you for all your friendliness, wonderful information and for the list of Doctors! I would have never found Dr. Ellison had it not been for that list.

thanks for letting everyone know about Dr Ellison & how you found your appt.
I hope that the treatment helps you.
The only thing I would say is that ES is caused by elongated styloid processes, or calcified ligaments, or both. Ossified ligaments can cause ES without the styloids being elongated. If your symptoms are not too bad, then fair enough to try other treatments, rather than the surgery which could have risks.
Please let us know how you get on & if the treatment helps- it’s always good to know of things which might help members!

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Well, that’s the thing. He was adamant that it was muscular after looking at the scope video. While I have my reservations, I’m going to at least try the PT for muscle tension. If the pain I have while swallowing doesn’t resolve within a reasonable amount of time I’ll go back to him and press the issue more.

I’m willing to try this at least. I think most of all, he was a very nice doctor and knew a lot about Eagle Syndrome.

Thank you Jules!

I was first diagnosed with Muscle tension dysphonia which is very similar. I was using the wrong muscles they said to talk with, and all my muscles in my throat were tight. I went to speech therapy and tried physical therapy and myofascial release. Nothing helped. I ended up removing my right styloid and so far a lot of my tension is gone. I do hope that all you need is some therapy but if it doesn’t get better I would reconsider the eagle diagnosis. It was so frustrating for me because every dr was telling me I need to get my muscle tension under control to help my pain but nothing was working and all they suggest was to keep doing therapy. I did find that the speech therapy exercise helped reduce some of my ES pain but it was only a temporary fix

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hmmmm. Ok, so that makes me think more. I’m still willing to try the voice therapy and see if it helps but it really makes me wonder if MTD is what I really have. Your story is very interesting and thank you for sharing it!