Acute Otitis Media Case Study

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Acute Otitis Media
Blaire, the 10-month-old patient, came into the doctor’s office with tugging of the ears. The doctor soon after diagnosed Blaire with bilateral acute otitis media. This disease primarily occurs in children between the ages of 6 months to 2 years.3 This is because the eustachian tube in children is in a different shape as compared to adults. The shape is shorter and more horizontal in children.4 This allows for an infection to stay in the tube for a much longer time. The infection occurs mostly after a viral infection has lowered the immune system and has inflamed and obstructed the eustachian tube. This allows bacteria to infect the nasopharynx and move its way into the eustachian tube because of the shape of the tube in children allowing backflow to occur. The main culprits for bacterial infection are Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, and Moraxella catarrhalis.3 These bacteria make their way into the middle ear and can stay there and replicate. The horizontal shape of the tube doesn’t allow for clearance of any fluid or possible bacteria in the ear and therefore takes longer for the infection to clear.3
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Patients with this show no signs of redness or pain in the ear and only complain of having a full ear or of slight hearing loss. Antibiotic treatment is not needed here, instead waiting for the fluid to drain is the first line for treatment.2,3 Chronic otitis media with effusion is like regular otitis media with effusion but the fluid remains in the ear for a prolonged time. It is not infected but if an infection does occur, the fluid prevents it from being resolved in a timely

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