Concurrent nasal surgery and tympanoplasty in adults

September 30, 2010     Theodore A. Schuman, MD and Robert F. Labadie, MD, PhD


We conducted a retrospective chart review to determine if performing simultaneous nasal surgery and tympanoplasty jeopardizes tympanic membrane graft survival and the surgical outcome. Our study population consisted of 14 consecutively presenting adults with nasal septal deviation and otologic pathology who had undergone simultaneous nasal and otologic procedures at an academic tertiary care medical center. Surgical procedures included septoplasty and bilateral inferior turbinate submucous reduction with concurrent primary or revision tympanoplasty with or without mastoidectomy and ossicular chain reconstruction. Follow-up ranged from 1.8 to 29.8 months (mean: 12.8 ± 10.8). The primary outcomes measures were tympanic membrane graft survival and surgical success; the latter was defined as an absence of middle ear effusion and a lack of need for pressure-equalization tube placement in patients with intact grafts. We found that 13 of the 14 tympanic membrane grafts (92.9%) survived at the most recent follow-up and that 11 patients (78.6%) achieved an aerated middle ear without the need for a pressure-equalization tube. These rates compare favorably with those quoted in the literature for tympanoplasty performed without concomitant nasal surgery. We conclude that septoplasty can be safely and effectively performed at the same time as tympanoplasty with or without mastoidectomy with no increase in the risk of surgical failure.

Congenital cholesteatoma in the tympanic membrane

July 31, 2010     Min-Tsan Shu, MD, Hung-Ching Lin, MD, Cheng-Chien Yang, MD, and Yu-Chun Chen, MD

An insect on the tympanic membrane

March 1, 2010     Arun K. Gadre, MD, FACS, DORL

Tympanum-canal angles anteriorly, anteroinferiorly, and inferiorly: A postmortem study of 41 adult crania

August 31, 2009     N. Wendell Todd, MD, MPH


The angles formed by the tympanic membrane and the external ear canal anteriorly, anteroinferiorly, and inferiorly can pose surgical challenges, and the spaces they form can harbor iatrogenic cholesteatoma. The range of values previously reported for these angles-27° to 60°-seems not to have been determined in a clinically applicable manner. To clinically describe the tympanum-canal angles, assess bilateral symmetry, assess the angles relative to mastoid pneumatization, and assess the relationship of the angles to manubrium orientation in the skull, the author conducted a postmortem anatomic study of 41 bequeathed adult crania without clinical otitis media. As viewed through the external ear canal, the tympanum-canal angles were measured in 10° increments anteriorly, anteroinferiorly, and inferiorly relative to the line of the manubrium. Mastoid sizes were determined radiographically. In the right ear, the tympanum-canal angles ranged from 40° to 60° anteriorly (median: 55°), from 50° to 70° anteroinferiorly (median: 60°), and from 70° to 80° inferiorly (median: 75°). Bilateral symmetry was found (each rs ≥ 0.69, p < 0.001). Although the angles did not correlate with either mastoid pneumatization or manubrium orientation relative to the Frankfort plane, nonvisualization of the annulus anteriorly was significantly more common in specimens with well-pneumatized mastoids (p < 0.05). The author concludes that the tympanum-canal angles anteriorly, anteroinferiorly, and inferiorly have comparatively narrow ranges, exhibit bilateral symmetry, and are unrelated to both mastoid size and manubrium orientation in the skull.

Ear trauma caused by a yucca plant leaf spine

May 31, 2009     Yoav P. Talmi, MD, FACS, Michael Wolf, MD, Lela Migirov, MD, and Jona Kronenberg, MD


Three uncommon cases of ear trauma caused by a yucca plant leaf spine are presented. One patient presented with tympanic perforation and the second with mixed hearing loss after spontaneous closure. The third patient probably had a perilymphatic fistula with subsequent labyrinthitis and hearing loss. Although the yucca is a ubiquitous plant, to the best of our knowledge, such incidents have not been previously reported.

Aspergillus otomycosis in an immunocompromised patient

October 31, 2008     Amy L. Rutt, DO and Robert T. Sataloff, MD, DMA


Aspergillus niger, an opportunistic filamentous fungus, was identified as the cause of chronic unilateral otomycosis in a 55-year old, immunocompromised man who had been unresponsive to a variety of treatment regimens. The patient presented with intermittent otalgia and otorrhea and with a perforation of his left tympanic membrane. A niger was identified in a culture specimen obtained from the patient's left ear canal. In immunocompromised patients, it is important that the treatment of otomycosis be prompt and vigorous, to minimize the likelihood of hearing loss and invasive temporal bone infection.

Assessments of the size of tympanic membrane perforations: A comparison of clinical estimations with video-otoscopic calculations

September 25, 2008     Titus S. Ibekwe, FWACS, Onyekwere G.B. Nwaorgu, FWACS, Aderemi A. Adeosun, FWACS, Daniel D. Kokong, MBBS, Hakeem O. Lawal, MBBS, Patrick O. Okundia, MBBS, and Paul A. Onakoya, FWACS (Ib)


We conducted a study to determine how accurate various ENT specialists were in estimating the size of 100 tympanic membrane (TM) perforations with standard otoscopy. The specialists included, in descending order of rank, 2 Consultant Surgeons, 2 Senior Registrars, and 2 Registrars, all of whom had confirmed good vision. We compared their estimates, which were made independently and expressed as a percentage of the total area of the TM, with exact measurements calculated with computer-based video-otoscopy. We found that the video-otoscopic calculations were far superior to the estimates of the specialists, even the most experienced Consultants (p < 0.01). We recommend that video-otoscopy be used whenever possible.

Monitoring reimbursement for unit charges

September 25, 2008     Steven F. Isenberg, MD

Results of exploratory tympanotomy following sudden unilateral deafness and its effects on hearing restoration

July 31, 2008     Wolfgang Maier, MD, Milo Fradis, MD, Susanne Kimpel, MD, Jörg Schipper, MD, and Roland Laszig, MD


In cases of acute unilateral deafness, no consensus exists as to whether tympanotomy and sealing of the round window should be performed routinely. To further address this issue, we conducted a retrospective study of pre-, intra-, and postoperative findings in 97 patients who had undergone exploratory tympanotomy (EXT) after the onset of sudden and severe unilateral deafness. Our goal was to ascertain, if we could, whether the benefits of EXT outweigh the risks. We also took into account the effects of perilymph fistula (PLF) on the etiology of sudden hearing loss and postoperative outcomes. We found that routine EXT was indeed beneficial for these patients. It was associated with a very low surgical complication rate, and its effects on hearing as assessed by objective measures were beneficial. The greatest benefits were seen in patients who underwent EXT within 7 days after the onset of their hearing loss. With respect to PLF, we found that the presence or absence of the “typical history” of PLF (i.e., a sudden unilateral hearing loss within 48 hours after a precipitating trauma or physical exertion) had no bearing on whether a PLF was actually present in our group; nor was vertigo a reliable predictor of PLF. We recommend that EXT be performed on all patients with new-onset acute unilateral deafness, barring any contraindications, of course. The absence of a typical history of PLF should not dissuade the surgeon from proceeding with EXT.


June 30, 2008     Marc K. Bassim, MD and Jose N. Fayad, MD

Recurrent tympanic membrane perforation following medial graft tympanoplasty

December 1, 2007     Arun K. Gadre, MD and Adam C. Augenstein, MD
of 6Next