Ear Injury

Injuries to the ear can be divided into EXTERNAL EAR and INTERNAL EAR injuries.These may be caused by the application of blunt or sharp forces and, commonly,by the placement of objects into the ear canal.

* INTERNAL EAR INJURIES are frequently self-inflicted via objects placed into the ear canal. Rupture of the eardrum can occur, resulting in sharp pain and an abrupt decline in hearing. Other common modes of eardrum rupture include: injury from a slap by the palm particularly, when the ear is wet, or rapid changes in pressure (barotrauma), which occurs while flying or deep sea diving. Often the ruptured eardrum will heal without any specific treatment. Eardrums ruptured by foreign objects, or those that have come into contact with contaminated water, require oral antibiotics to lessen the likelihood of bacterial infection. The ear canal must be kept free of water and ear drops. The eardrum rupture should always be evaluated by a ENT Specialist to rule out damage to the ossicles (tiny bones adjacent to the ear drum).

* EXTERNAL EAR INJURIES may take the form of lacerations or blunt soft tissue injuries. Lacerations will often require surgical repair (stitches) to maintain cosmetic appearance and reduce the risk of infection. Blunt injuries to the ear may result in marked swelling (hematoma). Large hematomas may require incision and drainage to avoid permanent disfigurement (cauliflower ear). Cold packs and a compressive ear dressing, applied soon after the injury, can eliminate this problem. Abrasions may be treated with gentle cleansing, using an antibacterial soap and application of an antibiotic ointment. Tetanus status must be renewed (administered every 5 years) if there are any wounds which break the skin. An ENT Specialist is the expert in treatment of most ear problems. Pain control can be accomplished with acetaminophen, aspirin, or anti-inflammatories (ibuprofen).

Hope this article will provide you information about ear injury.

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