ACUTE MIDDLE EAR INFLAMMATION

Inflammation and infection of the space between the eardrum and the inner ear is called middle ear inflammation. Single ear or both ears may be affected simultaneously.

This is very common in the children and incidence decreases by increase of the age.

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CAUSES

One of the most important causes is failure of Eustachian tube which connects the middle ear with nasal passage. The causative factors include;

  • Upper respiratory tract infections,
  • Adenoids,
  • Allergy,
  • Weakening of the immune system,
  • Anatomic disorders
  • Genetic tendency
  • Being in crowded environments
  • Exposure to tobacco smoke.

SYMPTOMS

  • Ear pain (pain sense changes while leaning forward o sitting. The pain also increases due to pressure increase while leaning.)
  • Sense of fullness,
  • Hearing loss,
  • Irritability in babies,
  • Fever,
  • Exhaustion,
  • Hearing loss,
  • Tinnitus,
  • If the inflammatory material perforates the ear drum and flow outside, haemorrhagic and inflammatory ear discharge.

TREATMENT

Antibiotics are usually treated by analgesic and antipyretic agents. Ear drum may be scratched when no response is obtained to antibiotics.

CRHONIC MIDDLE EAR INFLAMMATION

It refers to conditions in which the inflammatory disease in the middle ear lasts long and there is a permanent perforation in the eardrum. It usually occurs when the middle ear inflammation begins in early childhood and is not adequately treated and controlled. It may damage the ossicles in the middle ear (anvil, hammer, stirrup) and inflammation in other tissues in and around the ear bone.

IT MAY BE OBSERVED IN THREE FORMS

-Chronic ear inflammations without discharge and cholesteatoma

The ear drum is perforated after ear inflammation and it was not closed. The middle ear inflammation appears again when the ear drum is perforated and ear discharge repeats.

– Chronic ear inflammations with discharge and without cholesteatoma

The inflammatory discharge on the ear persists. Hearing loss is a little more.

–  Chronic ear inflammations with cholesteatoma

Invasion of the skin which exists in the outer part of the eardrum and external ear tract into the middle ear through the rupture on the eardrum, namely, existence of the skin in the middle ear, is called cholestatoma.  The skin continues to grow by folding on itself. During growth, the skin destroys the surrounding tissues and causes a malodorous ear discharge by addition of inflammation onto the condition.

SYMPTOMS OF CHRONIC MIDDLE-EAR INFLAMMATION

  • Ear discharge,
  • Balance disorder,
  • Hearing loss and tinnitus,
  • Ear pain (rare)

TREATMENT

Treatment is usually surgical. Myringoplasty, tympanoplasty, ossiculoplasty and masteidectomy may be performed depending on the case. The objective is to treat the eardrum, to clear the permanent inflammation on the posterior side of the ear bone and to repair the ear bones. The achievement of the surgery is affected by presence of discharge, the side of the rupture on the eardrum and presence of damage on middle-ear bones.

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