ENT doctors handle a wide arrange of disorders that affect the ear, nose and throat, and one of the more familiar complaints that an ear, nose, and throat doctor (otolaryngologist) is sought out for is an earache; sometimes known as “inflammation of the middle ear (otitis media). While this is commonly spotted in children, otitis media can also involve adults. It’s a condition that should be taken seriously; because it can cause chronic infection or even loss of hearing.
The disorder is instigated by an obstruction of the Eustachian tube and typically happens when an allergy, cold, or upper respiratory illness exists. This could lead to an accumulation of mucous and pus behind the eardrum; which in turn, causes a buildup of pus in the middle ear. Swelling and pain result and occasionally the eardrum can’t vibrate as it should and causes hearing difficulties. This is commonly referred to as severe otitis media and can cause the eardrum to rupture.
Usually this is treated with antihistamines, decongestants, and/or antibiotics. However, if the symptoms continue or if multiple incidents happen your ENT doctor may place tube tubes in the ear. This is a short surgical technique where a small incision is made in the eardrum, fluid is suctioned out and a small tube is inserted to allow the tube to drain. The tube usually falls out on its own and the ear drum will heal. If it is decided that infected tonsils and adenoids are the reason for the condition, your ENT doctor may suggest they be removed during the same procedure for inserting the tube.
Remember, treatment for inflammation of the middle ear (otitis media) is serious and failure to take action could result in hearing loss.