Type of Surgery
Last updated: 02/17/2009
Generally, the patient can return home within two to three hours. Antibiotics are given, along with a mild pain reliever. After 10 days, the packing is removed and the ear is evaluated to see if the graft was successful. Water is kept away from...
the ear, and nose blowing is discouraged. If there are allegies or a cold, antibiotics and a decongestant are usually prescribed. Most patients can return to work after five or six days, or two to three weeks if they perform heavy physical labor. After three weeks, all packing is completely removed under the operating microscope. It is then determined whether or not the graft has fully taken.
Post-operative care is also designed to keep the patient comfortable. Infection is generally prevented by soaking the ear canal with antibiotics. To heal, the graft must be kept free from infection, and must not experience shearing forces or excessive tension. Activities that change the tympanic pressure are forbidden, such as sneezing with the mouth shut, using a straw to drink, or heavy nose blowing. A complete hearing test is performed four to six weeks after the operation.
Tympanoplasty is reconstructive surgery for the tympanic membrane, or eardrum. There are several options for treating a perforated eardrum. If the perforation is from recent trauma, many ENTs will elect to watch and see if it heals on its own. After that, surgery may be considered. Tympanoplasty can be performed through the ear canal or through an incision behind the ear. The surgeon takes a graft from the tissues under the skin around the ear and uses it to reconstruct the eardrum. One of the most common graft sites is from the tragus. The surgery takes Â½ to 1 hour if done through the ear canal and 2â…“ to 3 hours if an incision is needed. It is done under local or general anesthesia. It is done on an outpatient basis and is successful 85-90% of the time.
According to the latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics, 878,000 ear surgeries were performed in the United States in 2003.
From: National Center for Health Statistics
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