Have You Ever Heard of Red Ear Syndrome? Chad and Joe Have It! [Photos]
I have shared this with you all before, but it keeps happening to me. In fact, Sunday evening, Kevin and I were watching the Golden Globes. I got up to use the restroom, saw myself in the mirror and freaked out. There it was! My right ear was completely discolored. It was FIRE RED! That bizarre affliction that I inherited from my grandmother had resurfaced. And, Monday, I found out from Angel that her husband Joe suffers from the same oddity.
So, what is this bizarre ailment? How is it that my right ear can suddenly look and feel like a solar flare and my left ear looks perfectly normal? I did a little research into Red Ear Syndrome. And, yes! It's a real thing. A real diagnosis.
Here. Let's first start this medical discussion with a photo, visual aid.. I took Exhibit A during a recent episode of Red Ear Syndrome. LOOK AT THIS! Look at this completely jacked up ear. Abnormal. As red as a Republican state!
Is that not just absolutely absurd? No other part of my head or body is red at the time this phenomenon occurs. Just my right ear! Like someone dipped it in Frank's Red Hot Sauce. And it burns. There is so much heat emanating from my right lobe, OMU could hook me up to a substation and power up half a block. Even with the crap lighting in this pic I took in our half bath, you can see the difference.
A while back, I sat down to research Red Ear Syndrome and this is what I discovered from a variety of online medical advice sites. Here's what Wise Geek claims about the disorder-
"Red ear syndrome is a condition in which one or both ears become extremely red and hot to the touch, with the appearance of the redness occurring within seconds (check!). In some cases, pain accompanies the redness, with some sufferers reporting that the ears also become tender to the touch (check! Great. I'm a freak). A number of triggers that lead to an outbreak of red ear syndrome have been identified. Unfortunately, there is not a solitary course of treatment that can correct the problem. (Oh great! That figures. No cure!).
Most of the triggers of red ear syndrome have to do with some sort of movement of the head. People have experienced outbreaks while chewing food (I'm doomed), drinking (Come on! I sip girly drinks with fruit juice and umbrellas. How dangerous they can those be? I drink like a freshman college girl), coughing (I eat granola/bird seed for breakfast and routinely get choked), sneezing (I have allergies and can probably thank Granny for those too), or simply turning the neck rapidly in a single direction (I am rather dramatic and can pull off a double-take hilariously). There are cases in which sufferers would experience an outbreak of redness and discomfort after touching the earlobe (I don't normally walk around with my finger in my ear. That would be odd).
Other physical conditions can sometimes trigger an episode of red ear syndrome. For example, migraine sufferers may find that the ears turn red and are somewhat tender to the touch during the course of the head pain. Various forms of joint dysfunction also seem to trigger the reaction in some people. There is even some evidence that prolonged periods of stress or anxiety can lead to the development of this health issue."
Ah hah!! We may be onto something here. Finally! The one real medical issue I have inherited from my family is the lovely migraine. In fact, just about every branch on my immediate family tree suffers terribly from them. Is there a direct correlation between by big red right ear and my noggin'? I suppose it's possible. But until we find out for sure, I am just gonna have to walk around occasionally looking like the top of the WBKR tower- with it's big red flashing lights. Hey, that's the spirit! With my ear bright red, at least I'll be able to ward off aircraft.
Just do me a favor, if you ever see my right ear glowing (and you may), please don't make fun and call me "Rudolph." And, whatever you do, do NOT touch it or pull it or flick it for fun! I'd hate to pull a Drew Barrymore in Firestarter and unleash the fury and fire of my Red Ear Syndrome on you!