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Ear Tube Placement

Underlying Problems Requiring Ear Tube Placement:
Ear tube placement is a procedure that is most often performed on children. In most people, the ears are equipped with Eustachian tubes that reach from behind the eardrum to throat. They work to equalize the pressure in the ears and also allow for drainage. If the Eustachian tubes are not properly formed, then fluid can build up inside the middle ear, causing extreme pain and recurring infections. Ear tube placement may be used to open this space up and solve these problems before they cause temporary or permanent hearing damage.

Treatment:
The patient will often be given medication prior to an ear tube placement in order to relax him or her. In the case of a child, a combination of gas and IV sedation will be used. The procedure itself will generally take about ten to fifteen minutes, and the patient will be continually monitored during this time.

Using an operating microscope, the doctor will then proceed to access the eardrum through the outer ear canal. He or she will make a small incision in the eardrum and will then suction out any fluid that has built up. A tube will then be placed in the eardrum, as will some eardrops and a cotton plug.

Recovery from Ear Tube Placement:
After undergoing an ear tube placement, the patient will usually only need to remain at the hospital or surgical center until the anesthetic wears off. There will be few side effects or dietary restrictions. There may be some drainage from the ear for about a week. It is generally helpful to protect the ears when swimming or bathing.

Ear Tube Placement Specialists in Your Area