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ENT Surgical Associates Michigan


Otitis Media


Ear Infections

Otitis Media is inflammation of the middle ear space (behind the eardrum). Commonly, the inflammation occurs as the result of a middle ear infection, and can occur in one or both of the ears.

If it isn't treated promptly and effectively, hearing loss can result, which may impair a child's learning capacity or cause a delay in the development of normal speech. It can also cause severe earaches, and if left untreated for prolonged periods, the infection can spread to nearby structures in the head, especially the mastoid.

Acute Otitis Media is commonly caused by a bacteria or virus that enters into the middle ear space by traveling through the Eustachian Tube from the nose or throat.

Symptoms of Acute Otitis Media often include:

  • Ear pain or earache
  • A feeling of blockage or pressure in the ear or ears
  • Younger children may tug, rub or pull at the affected ear or hit the side of head
  • Fever and pain often accompanies the earache, especially in children
  • Hearing is typically muffled or diminished

Hearing Loss

Presbycusis is a progressive hearing loss that develops later in life and comes on slowly. It's usually a permanent type of hearing loss and often gets gradually worse with age.

Most of these types of hearing losses can be effectively improved by individually selected, prescribed and fitted hearing aids and occasionally surgery.

Some adults can have their hearing loss corrected by an ENT physician or surgeon, so its important to have an evaluation that makes this determination. Hearing aid dealers are not equipped to make this determination.

Cerumen (Wax) Impaction

Excessive cerumen or "ear wax" can become impacted and obstruct the ear canal, which can cause symptoms such as, ear fullness, pressure or hearing loss.

We strongly advise against attempting to remove impacted ear wax yourself by digging out with a  Q-tip, bobby-pin, paper clip, tooth pick or other sharp object. This usually only results in further injury to the ear and risks perforating the eardrum, which may cause permanent hearing loss and ear infections.

If over-the-counter ear wax softening drops are not successful in clearing the wax out of the ear, we recommend making an appointment with one of our ENT physicians to have the ear properly evacuated.

Ringing in the Ears (Tinnitus)

Tinnitus is a subjective experience of hearing a sound, a ringing or a noise when no such external physical sound is present. Some call it "head noises", "ringing" or other similar things. Although, most cases of tinnitus are not associated with serious disease processes, there are a few very serious and potentially life-threatening diseases that can present with tinnitus.  Therefore, it is recommended to have an evaluation by an ENT physician if you are experiencing tinnitus or ringing in the ears. Ringing in the ears especially if it is associated with vertigo or dizziness

Repair of Ear Drums

Is needed when there is a permanent perforation or hole in the eardrum. If not repaired permanently, hearing loss and infection (ear pain) can develop and can be a sign of a serious problem.

Draining Ears

An operation called a myringotomy involves a small surgical incision (opening) in the eardrum to promote drainage of the pus and mucus and to relieve pain. The incision heals within a few days and creates practically no scarring or injury to the eardrum. This is a common procedure done for children with fluid behind the ear drums.

Earlobe Repair

Are required mainly for ear lobes that have been damaged by ill-fitting earrings or trauma.