Otitis Media: One of the Major Hearing Disorders

Otitis Media is just one of the many hearing disorders that an ENT may see daily. It is an infection of the middle ear comprising of an air-filled cavity where the 3 ossicles (hammer, anvil and stirrup) are. Bacteria originates here as a result of accumulation or discharge after a viral infection. The middle ear is a cavity that contains only 3 bones of which form a chain that connects the eardrum to the inner ear, allowing the sound that enters to be amplified with the synchronous movement of the eardrum and ossicles.

The middle ear has a small internal tube that is the gateway for air (Eustachian tube). This opening is behind the nose. The coating of the middle ear is similar to the nose, therefore in an infection, such as classical flu or an allergy, the tube that connects the nose to the ear can clog and therefore fluid becomes trapped in the middle ear cavity, causing the person to listen less. In the end, the clogged ear can end up being infected with pus.

A cavity with a single input-output should never have this kind of liquid near it. The liquid or pus will build up violently and will form bacterial infections. This will exert strong pressure on the eardrum and will cause severe pain in the ear with the possibility that the tympanic membrane is perforated due to so much pressure. This infection usually is related to an upper respiratory tract infection and the person may experience a sore throat, runny nose, malaise, or fever.

The most common symptoms of this infection are intense earaches, the feeling of ear fullness, hearing loss, ear pounding, feeling malaise with fever and other symptoms depending on whether this is related to another infection or due to nose and throat sinuses. You should go to your doctor so he or she can provide proper treatment to avoid complications from these types of hearing disorders. If it is properly diagnosed and taken care of, the symptoms will lessen after starting treatment and everything should be back to normal in a couple weeks.If not treated in time, complications from abscesses (accumulation of pus) may depend on where the issue is located. For example, a subperiosteal abscess, OTO mastoiditis, acute thrombosis of the cavernous sinus, or brain abscess may accumulate infection. Visit Allen-ent.com to learn more.

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