During ear tube placement surgery, a small cut is made in the eardrum and a plastic tube is placed. This equalizes pressure by allowing air to reach the middle ear and draining fluid that may have built up behind the ear drums. Retained fluid can result in recurring infections. The tubes continue to ventilate ears and prevent fluid from building up. Ear tubes fall out on their own naturally about six to 12 months following the procedure.
Also Known As:
- ET tubes
Conditions Treated with Ear Tube Placement:
Ear tube placement is typically utilized to treat children with recurrent ear infections or hearing loss. It can also be used to treat inflammation or dysfunction of the Eustachian tube.
Non-surgical alternatives to ear tube placement include antibiotics to treat ear infections and decongestants. There are no comparable surgical alternatives to ear tube replacement.
Anesthesia with Ear Tube Placement:
Ear tube placement is performed with general anesthesia, which means that the patient is asleep and completely unaware during the procedure.
Potential Complications from Ear Tube Placement:
Possible risks of ear tube placement include eardrum scarring and a negative reaction to the anesthesia that is used.
Prognosis after Ear Tube Placement:
The prognosis for a positive end result following ear tube placement is very good.
Recovery from Ear Tube Placement:
The total recovery time for ear tube placement is about one to two days, but drainage from the ear can occur up to one week following the procedure.