Back to Basics: Perforated Eardrum

1800s cartoon. WikiCommons.

1800s ear trumpet. WikiCommons.

Infection is the leading cause of tympanic membrane perforation (TMP). As practitioners decrease the use of antibiotics for acute OM, the question arises…will there be an increase in TMP?

Take a few minutes to read the bullet points or listen to the March EMRAP podcast: Perforated Eardrum by Rob Orman MD and Clay Finley MD. How would you answer these questions?

  1. Can you use Cortisporin (neomycin and polymyxin B sulfates and hydrocortisone otic solution) in suspected TMP?
  2. What percent of TMP heal spontaneously?
  3. How to treat otorrhea in a patient with tympanostomy tubes?

Who Knew: At the end of the 18th century, eardrum perforation was indiscriminately performed by untrained “physicians” in England, France, and Germany. Because of the negative results of indiscriminate eardrum perforation, the operation soon acquired a bad reputation and was not performed for decades until Herrmann Schwartze reintroduced paracentesis into the daily practice of otorhinolaryngology.

 

 

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