Contralateral Ear Findings in Chronic Otitis Media.Sisli Etfal Hastan Tip Bul. 2018; 52(3):179-183.SE
Chronic otitis media (COM) reveals a spectrum of otoscopic findings, and both ears may be affected to a different degree. The analysis of contralateral ear in patients with COM is important to detect the early signs of the disease. This may enable the follow-up and treatment of abnormalities in contralateral ear without delay. Therefore, in this study, we aimed to investigate the otoscopic and audiologic findings of contralateral ears of patients with COM.
The institutional data of patients who underwent surgical treatment between 2014 and 2017 due to COM were reviewed. Suppurative ears with cholesteatoma, polyps, and otorrhea refractory to medical treatment and ears with dry middle ear mucosa, with otorrhea responsive to medical treatment, and without cholesteatoma were divided into two groups (Group 1 and Group 2, respectively). All patients were examined with regard to the presence of perforation, retraction, myringosclerosis, atrophy, and audiological results before the groups were compared.
Approximately 50% of contralateral ears of patients with COM showed abnormalities at an otoscopic examination in both groups. Tympanic membrane retraction in Group 1 was greater than in Group 2, and the difference was statistically significant (p<0.05). Both the mean air and bone conduction thresholds of the contralateral ears in Group 1 were also found to be elevated when compared with Group 2, and the differences were statistically significant (p<0.05).
COM may be seen bilaterally due to the same predisposing factors affecting the ears. Therefore, detection, follow-up, and early treatment of abnormalities of contralateral ear associated with otitis media have clinical importance in the prevention or delaying progression of these abnormalities to COM.