KEYC - THRIVE: Treating Reoccurring Ear Infections

THRIVE: Treating Reoccurring Ear Infections

Posted: Updated:
MANKATO , MINN. -

Symptoms of an ear infection may include earaches and thick, yellow fluid coming from the ears.

Mostly caused in children, they can be reoccurring and extremely painful.

Mankato Clinic ENT Specialist Brett Baldwin says, "Most of the time it's because of that undeveloped U station tube that is supposed to drain that middle ear space and they sit at more of a horizontal rather than a vertical plane so they're a little less effective at draining."

Reoccurring ear infections can lead to hearing loss.

Baldwin says, "Just having fluid in the middle ear space doesn't allow the sound to be transmitted well from the ear drum down through a lot of the hearing bones into the inner ear mechanism so having just fluid there a lot of times that fluid can become thickened almost like a glue which can further decrease the hearing.”

Inserting ear tubes is a surgical procedure that can help stop those reoccurring ear infections by draining the fluid and ventilating the middle ear.

Baldwin says, "It takes about two minutes to do. I operate under a microscope. The tubes although visible by the eye it's much easier under the microscope. I make a small incision at the anterior inferior aspect of the ear drum such in any fluid that would be normal just sitting in that middle ear and I put the small tube through the opening in the ear drum."

The internal diameter of the tube is 1.27 millimeters.

The tubes last anywhere from 6–18 months.

Baldwin says, “As the ear drum heals it heals from the inside out and it just naturally pushes the tube out and it falls out into the ear canal.”

For more information visit keyc.com/thrive.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Verizon to Close Mankato Call Center

    Verizon to Close Mankato Call Center

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 7:49 PM EST2018-02-22 00:49:30 GMT

    Verizon: 300 customer service workers will have the opportunity to transition to home-based positions with the company

    Verizon: 300 customer service workers will have the opportunity to transition to home-based positions with the company

  • Flu Suspected in Death of Albert Lea Infant

    Flu Suspected in Death of Albert Lea Infant

    Wednesday, February 21 2018 5:01 PM EST2018-02-21 22:01:46 GMT

    The Albert Lea Police Department says foul play is not suspected and further tests will be conducted to determine the specific cause of death. 

    The Albert Lea Police Department says foul play is not suspected and further tests will be conducted to determine the specific cause of death. 

  • Mapleton Native To Compete In Gold Medal Curling Match

    Mapleton Native To Compete In Gold Medal Curling Match

    Thursday, February 22 2018 8:01 PM EST2018-02-23 01:01:31 GMT

    Many Mapleton residents have plans to stay up late Friday and watch the gold medal match against Sweden.  No matter what happens, the love for John Landsteiner will carry on.

    Many Mapleton residents have plans to stay up late Friday and watch the gold medal match against Sweden.  No matter what happens, the love for John Landsteiner will carry on.