Good morning @Natty04
I would agree the Pledget would not likely yield much with your symptoms as they are now if the test is only 4 hours.
From my experience, having had many CT imaging testing for this, you need to work with a very experienced ENT and radiologist. My surgeon has been treating CSF leaks for 2 decades and has developed a specific sinus CT protocol in conjunction with a specific radiologist he has trained with. Many radiologist reading general CT sinus scans are not trained to look for this and indeed that was the case with me. The general CT I took to my surgeon the first day we met showed the hole but was not reported, which he pointed out in office. He immediately referred me for another CT and confirmed this as a more extensive defect…who you see matters.
Has Dr. Axon looked in your ears/nose with an in-office scope? Your symptoms with swallowing fluid and ear crackling/wet really sounds suspicious for a skull base leak.
Hopefully addressing the styloid/IJV will decrease the IIH enough for this to heal on its own. It is encouraging to hear the wedge and no caffeine has helped!
I feel for you in this, hang in there. Keep searching until you find the right doctor!