See, no one whats to have an abnormal skin growth in the middle ear behind the eardrum. This growth is cholesteatoma. It causes frequent infections, even tear or perforation in the eardrum. It develops as cysts that discharge layers of old skin. With time, the build-up of the skin causes Cholesteatoma inside the middle ear. Unfortunately, it continues to increase in size if not treated properly. Evidently, it disrupts the small and delicate bones of the middle ear. Moreover, continued growth leads to hearing loss, dizziness, and facial muscle paralysis.
Take of ENT experts on a cholesteatoma
The main reason behind the cause of a cholesteatoma is poor eustachian tube function. In some cases, an infection in the middle ear as well. So, here we are sharing the root causes. The eustachian tube has a function to convey air from the back of the nose into the middle ear. This helps equalize ear pressure. When allergy, a cold, or sinusitis tampers with the natural flow, the body absorbs the air from the middle ear. This makes a partial vacuum.
Interestingly, the vacuum pressure sucks in the sac and stretch-out the eardrum. The areas already weakened by the previous infection can develop into a sac and become a cholesteatoma. Sometimes, a rare congenital form of cholesteatoma can occur in the middle ear. However, commonly, it is associated with ear infections.
How can a patient detect a Cholesteatoma
Cholesteatoma can be identified if it causes these symptoms:
- Hearing loss
- Ear drainage, often with a bad smell
- Earache or pain
- Recurrent ear infections
- The sensation of ear fullness
- Facial muscle weakness
If you experience any of these symptoms, this is an alarming signal. You need to make an appointment with a good ENT specialist, or an Ear doctor as soon as possible.
Dangers associated with ear problems like Cholesteatoma
According to experts, at first, you may start to notice fluid with a foul odor draining from the ear. Since we already know that cholesteatoma continues to enlarge. It can also cause increased pressure in the ear leading to hearing loss. A persistent ache behind or in the ear that gets severe at night can cause significant discomfort. So, it’s better if you consult with an ENT doctor.
Later on, a patient is likely to experience dizziness or muscle weakness on the side of the infected ear. It is important to understand that these symptoms are not benign and are good reasons to seek medical evaluation. to sum up, a patient of cholesteatoma shouldn’t ignore it as it can be dangerous.
Also Read: Know the Do’s and Don’ts to Clean your Ears
The general medical opinion of Cholesteatoma in the ear
For a diagnosis, a physical examination will be done by an ENT surgeon or specialist. This can confirm the presence of a cholesteatoma. Also, the initial treatment entails a careful cleaning of the ear, antibiotics, and ear drops. Moreover, the treatment will aim to stop the drainage in the ear by controlling the infection. The continual growth of a cholesteatoma should also be evaluated.
The prominent reason to asses and deter growth is that a large cholesteatoma requires surgical treatment. If not treated in time, it can cause serious complications. To be sure, a hearing and balance tests, an X-ray scan and CAT scans of the mastoid are necessary. They can determine the hearing level in the ear and the extent of damage the cholesteatoma has caused.
Is the surgical procedure for Cholesteatoma safe?
For minimal pain, surgery is performed under general anesthesia where the surgeon removes the cholesteatoma. To be fair, preservation or restoration of hearing is the secondary goal of surgery. If you are suffering from the symptoms or worry that you have a cholesteatoma, don’t wait. Visit an ENT expert for consultation and know all about the surgery. It can be done on an out-patient basis, so, an overnight stay is not necessary. In rare cases of serious infection, hospitalization for antibiotic treatment may be necessary for a couple of days.
Post-surgery, follow-up visits are necessary to assess the results for recurrence. Besides, you need to know that cholesteatoma is a serious but treatable ear condition. You can learn the most about the procedure by visiting an ENT doctor. An ear, nose and throat doctor is specialized in medical as well as medical management of the condition.