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What happens if swimmer's ear goes untreated?

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Swimmer's ear often clears up within a few days after starting treatment. But if it's not treated, it can be very painful. If you have diabetes or a problem with your immune system, it can damage bones or cartilage in your ear.

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Swimmer's Ear."

CDC: "Facts About 'Swimmer's Ear."

UpToDate: "External Otitis: Treatment," "External Otitis (Including Swimmer's Ear) (Beyond the Basics)," "Malignant (Necrotizing) External Otitis"

Cleveland Clinic: "Otitis Externa (Swimmer's Ear)."

KidsHealth: "Swimmer's Ear."

FamilyDoctor: "Otitis Externa (Swimmer's Ear)."

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on September 9, 2019

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Swimmer's Ear."

CDC: "Facts About 'Swimmer's Ear."

UpToDate: "External Otitis: Treatment," "External Otitis (Including Swimmer's Ear) (Beyond the Basics)," "Malignant (Necrotizing) External Otitis"

Cleveland Clinic: "Otitis Externa (Swimmer's Ear)."

KidsHealth: "Swimmer's Ear."

FamilyDoctor: "Otitis Externa (Swimmer's Ear)."

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on September 9, 2019

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How is swimmer's ear treated?

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