I had grommet inserted in left ear 1 week ago for chronic (12months) eustachian tube dysfunction in order to relieve pressure feeling, muffled hearing, crackling-popping sounds. This problem has been attributed to chronic rhinosinusitis but actually started 1-2 weeks after having flu vaccination in autumn 2011.I am a doctor and tried all the usual treatments for eustachian tube dysfunction without success but finally and a little reluctantly decided a grommet was my only remaining option after 12months of silent suffering!
Well I had the grommet inserted 1 week ago and instead of the expected gradual improvement my hearing is worse in the way that all you have described and I can now also hear my carotid pulsation;also struggling to hear anything through my stethoscope!
This is not what I expected at all and having read all your posts was hoping for reassurance that symptoms settle after a few weeks. Will be seeing ENT doctor again in few weeks and if my symptoms have not improved will consider grommet removal.