Hearing management

Question
Posted by: karen | 2011-06-02

Q.

fungas


Have had a perforated drum for more than a year, water gets in I try and dry it using a hair dryer and eventually have to resort to cotton wool as it becomes extremely itchy, wax is non-existent. This cycle has repeated itself for many years and I am worried if it is a bacteria it will spread. I have anti-biotics at least once a year. Is it possible that this is maybe a fungus?

Expert's Reply

A.

Hearing Expert

Hi,

It is possible that this could be a fungal ear infection. Since the external auditory canal is warm and dark it is very easy for infections to grow. The skin of the ear canal is also thin so it is easily traumatised. The causes of fungal infection are: Moisture in the ears (perspiration, humidity, swimming), High temperatures, inserting foriegn objects into the ear (cotton swabs, ear plugs, fingernails), dermatological disease (eczema, acne) or trauma to the ear canal (perforated ear drum).
It is important that you do not flush out your ears to remove the debris as it may only aggravate the fungal infection by adding moisture to the ears. In order to treat fungal infections one must administer ear drops readily available at pharmacies (for swimmer's ear) to dry out the ear (often include alcohol).
You need to keep in mind that symptoms of a fungal ear infection are usually similar to a bacterial ear infection. The ear promotes a delicate environment where both bacteria and fungus thrive. If antibiotics are administered in the absence of a bacterial infection, the good bacteria are killed, allowing the fungus to thrive. The best course of action is to visit an ENT specialist to receive an accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Regards,
Nizha
Audiologist

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

1
user comments

C.

Posted by: Hearing Care | 2011-06-08

Hi,

It is possible that this could be a fungal ear infection. Since the external auditory canal is warm and dark it is very easy for infections to grow. The skin of the ear canal is also thin so it is easily traumatised. The causes of fungal infection are: Moisture in the ears (perspiration, humidity, swimming), High temperatures, inserting foriegn objects into the ear (cotton swabs, ear plugs, fingernails), dermatological disease (eczema, acne) or trauma to the ear canal (perforated ear drum).
It is important that you do not flush out your ears to remove the debris as it may only aggravate the fungal infection by adding moisture to the ears. In order to treat fungal infections one must administer ear drops readily available at pharmacies (for swimmer's ear) to dry out the ear (often include alcohol).
You need to keep in mind that symptoms of a fungal ear infection are usually similar to a bacterial ear infection. The ear promotes a delicate environment where both bacteria and fungus thrive. If antibiotics are administered in the absence of a bacterial infection, the good bacteria are killed, allowing the fungus to thrive. The best course of action is to visit an ENT specialist to receive an accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Regards,
Nizha
Audiologist

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