Thursday, January 28, 2010

Health: Ear Infections & Ear Tubes

Wow February is around the corner and I realized we are approaching 1 year with ear tubes. In 2008, my little diva's pediarician was concerned with her inability to thoroughly assess the condition of her inner ear. The little patient was not always cooperative during her checkup when it was time for her ear exam. Our pediatrician prescribed antibiotics to treat an ear infection as a preventive measure. In order to get a more in depth study of her ears, she suggested we see an ENT doctor at one of CHOP's specialty centers.

During our visit at the specialty center, the first step was to meet with the audiologist to complete a hearing test. The hearing test indicated hearing difficulty at specific decibels. Next, the ENT doctor performed an ear exam with a high powered scope that allowed him to get an in depth look at her inner ear. I was a little concerned with her fussiness during the exam but the little patients are placed on an exam bed and gently swaddled to prevent interruption of the exam. The ENT doctor recommended that she get tubes due to the build-up of fluid in both ears as well as indictions of slight hearing loss. I was a little apprehensive after learning she was going to have outpatient surgery but relieved to know we were at one of the best children's hospitals in the country.

In February of 2009, we were put on the schedule for her surgery. CHOP does an excellent job in providing all the necessary information related to prepping for the outpatient surgery the day before and what to expect the morning of your surgery. The nursing staff was really great in making her feel comfortable before the surgery as well as after the surgery. The surgery was about 15-20 minutes. She was a little irritable during the recovery period as the anesthesia begins to wear off. We received a thumbs up during our 3 month and 6 month follow-up appointments. No surgery is required to remove the tubes as they eventually come out of the ears. The tubes can remain in the ears from 6-12 months.

I am grateful our pediatrician suggested we visit a specialist and she is doing extremely well. After meeting other parents on the morning of her surgery I realized that in addition to hearing loss, some children experience delays with language development. It is very important to address this medical condition with your healthcare professional and take the necessary steps for treatment.

The article below from contains some valuable information related to ear ://www.parents.cinfections.

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