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Commonly called as swimmer’s ear, ear canal infection or external otitis is an inflammatory process affecting the skin of the outer ear canal, which moves along the eardrum to the outside. In the early course of the disease process, the symptoms are typically mild but may worsen if the infection spreads or if it is left untreated. In individuals with mild infection, they may experience signs and symptoms including ear canal itching with minor redness, mild discomfort which worsens when the auricle is pulled and the appearance of a clear, odorless drainage. If the infection is in its moderate progression, the patient may predominantly complain of having a more intense itching with increasing ear pain and more extensive ear redness, extreme fluid drainage, foul smelling yellowish pus and diminished and muffled hearing. When the condition becomes advanced, there is severe pain radiating to the face, neck and sides of the face. Possible causative bacteria are Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus while the Candida albicans and Aspergillus are the most common fungi to blame for this medical condition. Normally, the outer ear canal has a natural defense which helps prevent infection from occurring.
If a patient develops ear canal infection, then, the natural defenses in the ear have been overwhelmed. Scratches and abrasions in the ear can be due to cleaning the ear with cotton swab or hair pin, scratching with finger and using headphones and hearing aids. If otitis externa is in chronic form, the cause might not only because of bacteria but is more likely to be attributed by chronic dermatitis of the ear canal. It is important to learn the approaches for preventing a person from developing acute external otitis. The treatment is aimed at ending the disease process and permitting the ear canal to undergo healing process. To begin with, the outer ear canal is cleaned to assist the eardrops to run along the infected areas. Generally, acute ear canal infection resolves in just a few days after a therapeutic combination of topical wash and antibiotics, however, absolute convalescence of hearing and gland function may take place a little longer. Whatever the reason for this infection, avoid factors such as moisture and irritation as these extend the course of the disease.
This website is for informational purposes only and Is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This post will largely be limited to reviewing a single scientific paper, entitled “The Role of Extraesophageal Reflux in Otitis Media in Infants and Children,” by Dr. This was a significant study, published in 2008 in the journal, Laryngoscope, a premiere journal in the specialty of Otolaryngology.  This study included over 500 children (893 ear samples), looking for evidence of a link between reflux and middle ear infections (otitis media).
They reasoned that the only way for pepsin to get to the middle ear space in a child would be for that child to reflux it up.
Others have thought of using this marker before, and there have been small, ”pilot” studies suggesting that pepsin can be found in the middle ears of children who have reflux. Pepsin was present in the ear of 20% of the children with recurrent and chronic ear infections. Children younger than 1 year had a higher rate of purulent (infected with pus) ears and also pepsin in the middle ear.
Children with pepsin in their ears were more likely to have fluid in their ears than those children without pepsin. Most interestingly, there was NO correlation between the presence of pepsin and a reported history of reflux, allergies, or asthma.
The authors of the study concluded that pepsin in the middle ear was an “independent risk factor” for otitis media. They also note that clinical history of reflux – that is, the parents’ or physicians’ ability to diagnose reflux in infants – did not have any bearing on whether these children were found to have pepsin (from reflux) in their middle ears.  This just tells me that we stink at diagnosing reflux in little tykes based simply on clinical history, or asking the parents.


What we can take away from this study is that we (pediatric boogor docs) should consider treating reflux in our patients with recurrent and chronic ear infections. Simply type your best email address (the one you actually use) into the orange-outlined box at the upper right of the page, and click the subscribe button. When you receive the confirmation email, click on the link to give your okay to receive weekly email updates.
I promise to continue to work hard to provide content that will improve your health and the health of your children. O’Reilly et al., The Role of Extraesophageal Reflux in Otitis Media in Infants and Children.
What’s up to all, how is the whole thing, I think every one is getting more from this web site, and your views are good in support of new visitors. Commonly called as swimmera€™s ear, ear canal infection or external otitis is an inflammatory process affecting the skin of the outer ear canal, which moves along the eardrum to the outside. There is a temporary conductive hearing loss that will be experienced by a patient who displays enough swelling and ear pus to obstruct the opening of the ear.
Other symptoms include complete obstruction of the ear canal, redness and swelling, hyperthermia and swelling in the lymph nodes in the neck making it painful to open the jaw. Factors which can cause weakening of the ears’ protective mechanism and encourage growth of bacteria include excess ear moisture, abrasions in the ear canal and sensitivity reactions from various sources. Individuals with persistent dermatological conditions, including eczema and psoriasis are more predisposed to developing infections involving the outer auditory canal. But self-cleaning efforts must be avoided as these usually cause additional injury to the traumatized skin area, making the condition worse. The physician may then remove the discharge, ear wax and other materials and debris periodically and frequently with suction apparatus or ear curette. The medications may include an acidic solution which re-establishes the normal environment of the ear canal, corticosteroids which lessen inflammation, antibiotic to treat the infection and antifungal drugs if the condition is fungal in origin.
Before it has healed fully, the patient is still more susceptible to develop recurrent infection.
You might consider looking for a Naturopathic Doctor (doctor of naturopathy, or ND) in your area. Certain content that appears on this site comes from Amazon Services LLC, This content is provided “As Is” and is subject to change or removal at any time. Factors which can cause weakening of the earsa€™ protective mechanism and encourage growth of bacteria include excess ear moisture, abrasions in the ear canal and sensitivity reactions from various sources. The causative agent is commonly the bacteria, such as streptococcus, staphylococcus and pseudomonas. This slightly acidic substance creates a slim, water-repellant coating on the skin and discourages bacterial growth.
When sweating becomes heavy, or when humid weather is prolonged or when water remains in the ear after swimming, a favorable setting for bacterial growth is created.
If an individual is likely to develop the disease, earplugs and bathing caps can be given to them before swimming or taking a bath.
If necessary, place an earplug or cotton wool soaked in Vaseline on the outside when swimming or while taking a shower.
For larger insects, the ear is flushed with mineral oil to suffocate the organism and go to see a doctor for removal. Oftentimes, the cause is due to water that stays in the ear after showering or swimming, or insertion of foreign implements, thus, creating a suitable and inviting culture media for bacterial growth and proliferation. Additionally, this material accumulates dirt, dead cells and other debris and helps move these elements out of the ear.
Ears can be dried using towel corners or by placing a blow dryer several centimeters away from the ear set at its lowest setting.


Removing an object trapped in the ear must not be attempted by anyone, as this can be hard.
Faust, PhD, MD on 7 Startling Facts About Sleep Disorders (One you really need to know about)Russell A. Another useful factor is the downward slope of the ear canal which helps water and other materials to drain out of the canal. Soap and shampoo residues must be cleared immediately as these cause irritation and itching. Children with glue ear who have mucus behind their eardrum are more prone to ear infections. Sometimes pain that you can feel in the ear is due to referred pain from other causes such as teeth problems.
However, treatments that may be advised include the following: Painkillers If the ear infection is causing pain, then give painkillers to children regularly until the pain eases. If antibiotics are prescribed (see below), you should still give the painkiller as well until the pain eases. Recent research studies have found that a few drops of a local anaesthetic medication (lidocaine) placed into the ear may help to ease pain. However, it seems logical and may become more widely used over time, especially in children with severe ear pain.
Also, it is best not to take antibiotics unless needed, as side-effects such as diarrhoea or rash can sometimes be a problem. Antibiotics are more likely to be prescribed if: The child is under 2 years old (as the risk of complications is greater in babies). Sometimes, it may be difficult to see a doctor again in 2-3 days if things do not improve - for example, over a weekend. In this situation a doctor may give you a prescription for an antibiotic with the advice to use it to get the antibiotic only if the condition does not improve within 2-3 days.
If the eardrum bursts (perforates), then it usually heals over within a few weeks once the infection clears. If a child is normally well, then the risk of other serious complications developing from an ear infection is small. Very rarely, the infection spreads deeper into the inner ear, brain or other nearby tissues.
See a doctor if a child becomes more ill, does not improve over 2-3 days, or develops any symptoms that you are not sure about.
However, there is some evidence to suggest that an ear infection is less likely to develop: In breast-fed children. However, research studies have shown that the use of a dummy in young babies when getting off to sleep can reduce the risk of cot death.
So, regarding dummies, consider using a dummy in babies up to 6-12 months old at the start of each episode of sleep.
However if you breast-feed, do not start to use a dummy until you are well established with breast-feeding. If this occurs, a specialist may advise a long course of antibiotics to prevent further bouts from occurring. Occasionally, a specialist may advise the insertion of a grommet into the eardrum if ear infections are very frequent.



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