Published: Feb. 15, 2010
Updated: Feb. 15, 2010
Chronic ear infections are infections that do not clear up completely after multiple rounds of antibiotics. They occur in both children and adults.
If left untreated, chronic ear infections can cause long-term or permanent hearing loss. There are many causes of chronic ear infections including tympanic membrane perforation, Eustachian tube dysfunction, cholesteatoma, allergies, and chronic sinus disease.
A comprehensive physical exam and hearing test will be performed to determine the exact cause of the infections.
Once the cause of infection has been isolated, an appropriate therapy for the individual will be started. Treatment therapy may include antibiotics, allergy medications, or even surgery.
Ear tubes are often indicated in children and adults with chronic ear infections or build up of fluid behind the ear drum (middle ear effusion).
Chronic infections caused by a hole in the ear drum or from a skin cyst (cholesteatoma) may require an outpatient procedure to fix the problem.