efore looking at the infected ear
, I want to show what an uninfected, or normal ear
looks like. We are showing the left ear
, with a normal, pear
l-colored, almost translucent tympanic membrane or ear
drum. You can see the bones behind it. The little ossicles as we call them that conduct sound.
Dr. Mark Vaughan from the Auburn Medical Group speaking on Otitis Media, or middle ear infection.
On the infected ear, in comparison, this is the other side of the patient’s head, in his other ear. You see that it is red, angry-looking, and bulging, and there is pus behind it. You can’t see through it, it is opacified because off all of the inflammation and the blood that is in the eardrum. We used to treat this problem, Otitis Media, (ear infection), with antibiotics, across the board.
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The symptoms of an ear infection in adults are: Earache (either a sharp, sudden pain or a dull, continuous pain) A sharp stabbing pain with immediate warm drainage from the ear canal. A feeling of fullness in the ear.
The treatment of a middle ear infection depends on how bad the symptoms are and what’s causing the infection. Many infections will go away on their own and the only treatment necessary is medication for pain. Up to 80% of ear infections may go away without antibiotics.
Drugs, including acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen (Advil), help many adults with ear infections treat the pain associated with the accompanying inflammation.
Apply a warm cloth or warm water bottle to the affected ear.
Use over-the-counter pain relief drops for ears. Or, ask the provider about prescription eardrops to relieve pain.
Take over-the-counter medicines such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain or fever. DO NOT give aspirin to children.
The exact treatment for your ear infection will depend on the type of infection you have. In general, if your symptoms don’t get better in 48 to 72 hours, contact your health care provider. Middle ear infections can cause long-term problems if not treated.
Usually Amoxicillin, because the organisms that cause it are susceptible to that antibiotic, or will be killed off by it. We have a lot of problems with that. We have the development of resistant strains of bacteria, and we also have problems with the antibiotic itself causing harm to patients. A certain number of patients will have allergic reactions, which can even result in death.
Now what we do is go ahead, give the medicine for pain control, which can be Ibuprofen, Tylenol, or even ear drops for pain control. Then, sometimes doctors will give a prescription to be filled a day or two later for Amoxicillin. If the patient is not getting relief with just the pain medicine, and enough time for the infection to run itself out. Which it normally does.