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BIOC33H3 (127)

problems of the ear

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Biological Sciences
Stephen Reid

PROBLEMS OF THE EAR EXTERNAL OTITIS  External otitis involves inflammation or infection of the auricle and ear canal epithelium due to infection.  Symptoms are pain, ear canal swelling, and drainage.  Therapy is analgesics, antibiotics, and compresses. ACUTE OTITIS MEDIA  Untreated or repeated attacks of acute otitis media in early childhood may lead to chronic middle ear infection.  Symptoms include purulent exudate and inflammation that can involve the ossicles, eustachian tube, and mastoid bone.  It is often painless.  Treatment may include antibiotics and surgery. MÉNIÈRE’S DISEASE  Ménière’s disease is characterized by symptoms of inner ear disease with episodic vertigo, tinnitus, fluctuating sensorineural hearing loss, and aural fullness.  The cause is unknown, but results in excessive accumulation of endolymph.  Attacks may begin with sense of ear fullness, tinnitus, and decreased hearing acuity.  The duration of attacks is hours to days, and attacks occur several times a year.  Other symptoms are pallor, sweating, nausea, and vomiting.  Hearing loss fluctuates, and with continued attacks, recovery lessens, eventually leading to permanent hearing loss.  Drugs are used between and during attacks.  If not relieved, surgeries include endolymphatic sac decompression and vestibular nerve resection.  Nursing care minimizes vertigo and provides for patient safety with acute attacks. HEARING DISORDERS  Hearing disorders are the primary handicapping disability in the United States.  Conductive hearing loss: o Occurs in outer and mi
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