Old 10-11-2016, 02:59 PM #1
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Default Pressure sores on ear

Hi all-

Due to a weak neck and trouble turning over in bed, I have developed a pressure sore on my ear (fancy term: Chondrodermatitis Nodularis Anti-Helicis). While not as worrisome as the skin cancer my doctor originally thought it may be, it's a MAJOR pain in the a**.

I don't sleep on my back because it causes hip and back pain, so am stuck with trying to find a way to reduce pressure on my ear. I've tried a few different methods- the best is using two pillows side by side with my ear in the space between, but the face mask from my CPap makes this uncomfortable.

Has anyone else developed pressure sores on their ear? And if so, what have you done to successfully mitigate it? Are there any ready made products that have been successful? Any pillow topper or way to McGuyver something to create a comfortable way to remove pressure from the ear?

I'm open to trying anything at this point because the thing isn't healing.

Many thanks

Fiona
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:31 PM #2
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

Hi Fiona
You could try one of those neck pillows travel pillow. They are u shaped and quite squidgy, I lay on my side and sort of mould it round my shoulder to protect the joint as it's got quite boney and painful to lay on now. If you laid it flat rather than round your neck it would provide a nice hole for you ear.
Wendy x
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:38 PM #3
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

I had problems with the top of my ear folding down and creating a painful, sometimes bloody line. A thick piece or double layer of memory foam with an ear-sized circle cut out in the center worked but it had to be positioned correctly. The foam didn't feel good on my skin but anything laid over it kept my ear from going into the circle. Later I bought a memory foam contour pillow and quit using the ear padding and it works perfectly with no careful placement. A pillow case doesn't interfere with the effectiveness so it is comfortable. It could be that the pillow works now because of age related brain shrinkage making my head lighter!
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Old 10-11-2016, 04:15 PM #4
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

I used a buckwheat hull pillow. It was east to make a depression for my ear to rest in.
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Old 10-11-2016, 04:26 PM #5
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

Thank you for the suggestions. I like to hear things that have actually worked for people instead of what a doctor thinks *might* work. The dermatologist had never run into someone with my "unique and complex needs", which is polite for "I have no idea what to tell you." I'm guessing.

Wendy, that's a great idea. Thank you.

Diane, I doubt your head is getting any lighter- you are an information juggernaut for practical solutions.

hn7609, I shall try the buckwheat pillow tonight- I will steal it from my son, who has one. It's the least he can do for being his usual teenaged self.
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Old 10-15-2016, 11:33 AM #6
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

I use folded towels around the ear.
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Old 10-15-2016, 12:54 PM #7
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

We used sheepskin for a while. Lambs wool bits, pillow cases, pads.
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Old 10-15-2016, 02:17 PM #8
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

How did you go with trying any of the suggestions here?
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Old 10-15-2016, 03:48 PM #9
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

Tillie, thanks

I've combined a few different methods-

Changed the type of facemask for my breather to one that sits a little higher on my head instead of next to my ear.
Put a sheepskin on top of a memory foam pillow (not perfect, but better than my old pillow).
Sleep as much as I can on the other side.

So far it's been healing, but not as quickly as I'd hoped. If it doesn't heal in a few weeks, I'll likely try a cut out foam shape on top of my pillow. I've also looked in to ordering a silicone ear protector designed for just such issues and may do this if nothing else works.

Fiona
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Old 10-15-2016, 04:15 PM #10
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

That sounds like a good start, but they can be a little slow to heal up

Would you keep us updated as it will really help others in the future, and I for one want to know that you get it solved!
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Old 10-15-2016, 04:21 PM #11
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

Hi Fiona. On BettyMills.com: Cleaning, Sanitary & Medical Supplies. they have a bluechip medical ear pillow available in 2 different ear cut out sizes which may help you.

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Old 10-17-2016, 10:50 AM #12
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

Are you using a liquid bandage (ex. New-Skin)? It won't help with the pressure but maybe will protect the sore so that it can heal.
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Old 10-17-2016, 03:20 PM #13
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

Thanks very much.

Gorby- I use Fucidin ointment for my ear currently. It's slowly healing, and is no longer "open" thank goodness. If it flares up again, the liquid skin is definitely on my shopping list.

vw-fl- Thank you. Those were what I was thinking of as pillow toppers. Thanks for the link.


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Old 02-07-2017, 12:41 AM #14
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Default Re: Pressure sores on ear

I recently noticed a pillow case made out of GlideWear, purported to reduce friction. No experience with it. Also used in wheelchair headrest covers and cushion covers.
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