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How is drainage used to treat ear infections?

ANSWER

If an infection causes serious complications, fluid remains in the ear for a long time, or your child has ear infections that keep coming back, your doctor might want to do a procedure called a myringotomy.

The doctor creates a small hole in the eardrum so fluids such as water, blood, or pus can drain out. In many cases, he or she will put in a tube so it won’t get backed up again.

The tube, which will usually fall out on its own in about six to 18 months, lets air flow through and keeps the middle ear dry. Tubes also reduce pain, improve hearing

, and cut down on the number of infections your child may have.

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Risk Factors,” “Causes,” “Diagnosis,” “Treatments,” “Reye’s syndrome,” “Antibiotic Therapy.”

American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery: “Ear Tubes.” Academy of American Family Physicians. Merck. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.


Mount Sinai Hospital: “Myringotomy.”

FamilyDoctor.org: “Eustachian Tube Dysfunction.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on August 6, 2018

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Risk Factors,” “Causes,” “Diagnosis,” “Treatments,” “Reye’s syndrome,” “Antibiotic Therapy.”

American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery: “Ear Tubes.” Academy of American Family Physicians. Merck. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.


Mount Sinai Hospital: “Myringotomy.”

FamilyDoctor.org: “Eustachian Tube Dysfunction.”

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on August 6, 2018

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How is drainage performed to treat ear infections in younger children?

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