Head tilt caused by Earwax?

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Post   » Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:57 am

Hi my guinea pig Layla has resently made an excellent recovery from an Upper Respiratory Infection. She also suffers from allergys, so I bought an air purifier. It has helped both her allergys and mine and now no more wheezing like she was before. She has been doing great for a couple months now. However tonight I went to give her water and noticed she wasn't running to the bottle as she normally did. So I picked her up from her bed and laid her back down only to notice she had loss of balance and head tilt. I picked her up out of the cage and also noticed both of her eyes were darting in two different directions. I immediately thought either ear infection or stroke. I checked her ears and the side she was tilting towards had a big ball of wax blocking her entire ear canal. I had seen Earwax like this in her ear before (and removed it) but she did not display the symptoms I was seeing tonight. I put her in a blanket lined basket and have been sitting with her since. She has gotten better and better since then. No head tilt that is visible, no loss of balance as she has walked around more than she has all week. And definitely no loss of appetite. My question is, could the Earwax blockage cause all of these symptoms?

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Post   » Sun Jul 16, 2017 3:54 am

I don't think so, earwax and her condition was probably a coincidence. Blocking ear canal would cause discomfort, deafness, but not nystagmus - eye darting, which you have noticed. Are you sure that what there was in the ear canal was actually earwax, and not another substance, e.g exudance caused by infection?


Post   » Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:41 am

I am almost positive it was earwax. I have cleared it from her ear before during baths. As an update she is running around pushing things with her head, and even her eye darting has disappeared, and again her appetite is still great. She has made a complete 180 and is acting normal


Post   » Sun Jul 16, 2017 8:07 am

I plan on taking her to the vet tomorrow. But I don't trust her 100%. She is the only vet in my area that knows anything about guinea pigs or that will even treat them. When I took Layla for her URI she had me put her through multiple rounds of antibiotics and when she still had wheezing had a member of her staff tell me it might be allergies and gave me no advise as for treatment. I found out about air purifiers on my own and have had no luck finding any medication to manage the allergies. I'm worried I will take her back and pay $200 for her to say I don't know again plus pay for whatever treatment I can get on my own

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Post   » Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:31 am

This may have been a random occurrence (as Kimera notes, possibly not related to the earwax).

Meanwhile, I encourage you to clean the ears on a regular basis, at least weekly. The otoclens mentioned on this page works well:

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