Perforated ear drum
It means that there is a hole in the tympanic membrane that seperates external and middle ear.
Mostly a decrease in hearing and rarely drainage is seen. Pain is mostly absent.
Reasons of tympanic membrane perforations:
Trauma and infections are the main reasons.
Following conditions, the ear drum may be perforated:
*Trauma to the ear
*Some kind of crainal fractures
*After a sudden explotion
*To put sharp materials into the ear canal
*A very hot or acidic liquid entering the ear canal
Middle ear infections can cause pain, perforation and drainage. Purulant or bloody discharge may be seen. This is the middle ear infection accompanied with ear drum perforation.
Rarely perforation cannot closed by itself after ventilation tubes come out which are placed because of medical reasons.
Some takes place months to close but mostly perforations are closed in a couple of weeks. During healing prevent water to enter the ear canal. Operation may be needed if not closed by itself.
Hearing effects of perforated ear drum:
Bigger the perforation higher the hearing loss. Place of the perforations on the ear drum also effect hearing levels.
If perforation happens after a sudden trauma or explosion, tinnitus is seen besides hearing loss.
Treatment of perforated ear drum:
Hearing test should be performed before treatment.
If perforation is very small ent physicians can follow up for spontaneous closure. A small patch can be put over the perforation at the office for cooperative patients. After the closure hearing gets better. Some recurrent operations may be needed to close the perforation. Sometimes an operation under general anesthesia can be planned.
There are many operation types but the main principle is putting a patch covering the hole and let the perforation close. This is called “myringoplasty” in medical terminolugy.