What causes outer ear infection and how is it treated?
External ear infection, which occurs in the external ear canal and can be acute or chronic, is one of the disorders that causes severe pain.
External ear infection, which occurs in the external ear canal and can be acute or chronic, is one of the disorders that causes severe pain. Factors such as constant moisture in the ear canal, a thin skin layer in the inner part, and excessive accumulation of earwax are the reasons that increase the risk of external ear infection. Therefore, people living in regions where climate conditions are hot and humid and pool swimmers are in the risk group for external ear infections.
What is acute external ear infection? What are the symptoms?
The acute form of the disease is the most common infection of the external auditory canal. Reasons for the occurrence of infection can be listed as high temperature and humidity, insertion of a foreign object into the ear, lack of earwax, also called earwax, contact of the ear canal with liquids with a pH value greater than 7.0, long and narrow ear canal and the use of hearing aids. The most common pathogen that is effective in the development of acute otitis externa is the bacterium called pseudomonas aeruginosa. This bacterium, which likes wet and moist ground, settles in the ear canal, causing infection and sensitivity in the area.
Symptoms of acute external ear infection are itching and rapidly increasing pain, which usually begins after swimming. Pain increases especially when the ear is touched or moved. Edema can cause the external auditory canal to close, making hearing difficult. Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria is characterized by greenish purulent discharge, but if the infection occurs with other pathogens, discharge complaints may not be observed.
In treatment, first of all, analgesic or narcotic medication is used according to the doctor’s recommendation to relieve the severity of pain. Then, to increase the effect of the treatment, dirt and similar debris accumulated in the external ear canal must be cleaned. Cleaning can be done by dropping an appropriate amount of glycerin liquid into the ear canal. Acetic acid solution, neomycin, polymyxin, gentamicin and steroid drops, which are known to be the most effective local treatment methods, may be preferred. Antibiotic and steroid drops are usually applied 3-4 times, 3-4 drops each time. In order to continue the treatment more effectively, it is very important to apply the medications as prescribed by the doctor.
What is chronic external ear infection? What are the symptoms?
The main feature of chronic external ear infection is that it is an infectious disease that can last for months or even years and spread. This disease, caused by bacteria called Pseudomonas and Staphylococcus aereus, is a comprehensive condition in which many symptoms such as headache are observed together.
The ear canal becomes very narrow due to edema and hearing loss is often observed. In addition, it can be said that the complaint of discharge in chronic external ear infection is much less common than in the acute form.
In the treatment of the disease, a combination of steroid drops and appropriate antibiotics is usually used. However, in cases where the external ear canal is too narrow, surgical treatment may be planned by the doctor.
How to relieve the pain of outer ear infection?
The pain complaint that occurs with external ear infection is a problem that is quite severe and requires the use of analgesic medication. The painkiller to be used for pain control should be determined by the doctor and used at the specified frequency.
In some cases, the use of analgesic medication alone may not be effective in controlling pain. In such cases, cleaning the ear canal with aspiration method has a pain-reducing effect. The cleaning process must be carried out under the supervision of a healthcare professional to avoid damaging the ear and especially the eardrum.
External ear canal inflammation, which is accompanied by itching, may cause the person to scratch his ear and thus increase the pain. To prevent such problems, it is important to add antihistamine drugs to the treatment.
Note: If you observe the symptoms of the disease and experience similar complaints, you can apply to the Ear, Nose and Throat Department and have the opportunity for detailed examination and treatment by specialist physicians.