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Otitis Externa

Otitis externa is an inflammation of the skin lining of the ear canal. This condition typically happens when there is water in the ear due to showering or swimming. Otitis externa can also occur due to any object being put into the ear canal. Bacteria or fungi develop in the dark and warm ear canal. Otitis externa can be the result of over zealous cleaning of the ears. It can remove the protective wax layer. Conditions such as diabetes or psoriasis can also aggravate otitis externa. Otitis media occurs when the infection is in the middle part of the ear.


A person affected by otitis externa will experience pain and itching in the ear. There might be a discharge from the ear and hearing might be reduced. There might be vertigo and tinnitus. There may be tenderness and redness around the ear. A doctor will examine the ear for any inflammation and discharge. The ear will be cleaned of any pus or discharge. Suctioning is used to cleanse the ear canal. The ear can can be swabbed to identify the organisms causing otitis externa.

The doctor may prescribe ear drops or a course of antibiotics to treat the infection. These medications can reduce inflammation and restore the ear to normal pH balance. Painkillers are prescribed to reduce the pain caused by otitis externa.


  • Keep your ears dry
  • Use swimming cap or hood while surfing or swimming
Tags: #Otitis Externa
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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: March 5, 2021