Acute Otitis Media

6 Interesting Facts of Acute Otitis Media

  1. Otitis media with purulent otorrhea can occur secondary to a perforation in the tympanic membrane or in patients with patent tympanostomy tubes; draining otitis media can result in secondary otitis externa
  2. Acute otitis media presents similarly to otitis externa with sudden-onset otalgia associated with an erythematous tympanic membrane; otorrhea occurs when a defect is present in the tympanic membrane and otalgia typically diminishes following perforation
  3. Patients with acute otitis media typically have other associated symptoms (eg, fever, concurrent upper respiratory infection) and have evidence of middle ear effusion on examination (eg, bulging tympanic membrane, decreased mobility with insufflation)
  4. In contrast to patients with otitis externa, patients with otitis media lack tenderness with manipulation of the tragus and pinna
  5. Otitis media is more likely if patient is younger than 2 years 
  6. Differentiate by clinical presentation; tympanometry can assist in confirming otitis media if the diagnosis remains in question, because most patients with otitis media exhibit an abnormal tympanometry tracing (eg, flat type B tracings) and patients with a normal tympanic membrane show a normal, peaked-curve, type A tympanometry tracing 

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