The eardrum is a membrane located at the beginning of the middle ear. It is a delicate and tense tissue; it vibrates when receiving sound waves and transmits the sound to the middle ear. Intense pressure or an object can damage it, leading to a perforated eardrum. The problem can be painful, but you should know it has a solution in most cases. At Class, we continue reviewing ailments and diseases of the ear, a path that leads us inevitably to the situation, unfortunately common: the perforated eardrum. A ruptured eardrum is a slash in the tissue that separates the ear canal from the medium. This rupture or perforation can have several causes, symptoms, and consequences. Although it usually heals in a few weeks without needing treatment, some situations may require surgical intervention.
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Symptoms of a Perforated Eardrum
One of the symptoms of a perforated eardrum is pain. It is not a permanent pain. It occurs at the moment of rupture and can be pretty intense. In a few seconds, it will be relieve, but a visit to the specialist will be necessary to evaluate if the breakage has occurred and determine a treatment.
It is possible that after a sudden or intense change in pressure. After an explosion or trauma caused by an object, for example, a stick, severe pain and the subsequent secretion of transparent liquid may be noted. In some cases, slight bleeding may also occur. It is another clear symptom of eardrum perforation.
The most common symptoms of a perforated tympanic membrane are: an occasional pain in the ear that goes away quickly, discharge from the ear that may be clear, pus-like, or even bloody, hearing loss, ringing in the ears (i.e., tinnitus) or sensation of vertigo.
If, in addition to what is described, hearing loss is perceived, ringing in the ears or feeling of vertigo, it is inevitable that the eardrum ruptures. What to do in this case?
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Causes of a Perforated Eardrum
The following eventualities tend to be the most common causes of a perforated eardrum:
- Otitis media. An ear infection media or otitis media can cause a buildup of fluid in your middle ear, the pressure of which can end up causing the eardrum to rupture.
- Barotrauma. An injury to the ear is caused by a pressure difference in air or water. Many cases of perforated eardrums are due to this occurrence, especially when traveling by plane, although it can also occur while diving or receiving a sudden impact on the ear.
- Acoustic trauma. A mighty sound wave, such as an explosion, can cause the eardrum to rupture.
Treatment of Eardrum Rupture
The perforated eardrum has a solution in most cases, although depending on the severity, there may be some sequel. In these cases, you may need earphones. Typically, the membrane recomposes itself with a simple treatment imposed by an agent expert. If the problem is severe, surgery will be necessary.
Although most situations of eardrum rupture heal on their own after a few weeks, some cases can be complicated, for example, if an infection is involve. The specialist doctor can prescribe antibiotic drops to stop this infection.
If this rupture in the eardrum does not heal on its own, treatment should be follow that proceeds to close this hole. Standard treatment is the application of a patch to seal the hole in the eardrum. If this treatment fails, the next option is usually a surgical intervention. Although going under the knife can be very scary, it is not a complex operation, and most patients can go home the same day as the operation.
If you think you have suffered damage to the eardrum, go to one of our centers. You can go directly or make an appointment. To contact us, use the means we show you on the Class website. We will analyze the case and give you a solution.
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