what type of hearing loss seen in malignant otitis externa conductive or sensorineural hearing loss
Malignant otitis externa (MOE) is a severe and potentially life-threatening infection that primarily affects the external ear canal and surrounding structures. It typically occurs in elderly individuals with diabetes or compromised immune systems.
In malignant otitis externa, the infection extends beyond the external ear canal and can involve the surrounding tissues, including bones such as the temporal bone. The infection can lead to osteomyelitis (inflammation of the bone), and the associated complications can impact hearing.
Hearing loss in malignant otitis externa is usually conductive rather than sensorineural. Conductive hearing loss occurs when sound waves are blocked or impeded from reaching the inner ear. In the context of MOE, this can occur due to several factors:
- Obstruction: Inflammation, swelling, and discharge associated with the infection can physically obstruct the ear canal, preventing sound waves from reaching the eardrum.
- Osteomyelitis: If the infection spreads to involve the bones of the ear, such as the temporal bone, it can disrupt the normal conduction of sound through the middle ear.
It’s important to note that the hearing loss in malignant otitis externa is typically a secondary complication of the infection. The primary focus of treatment is to manage the infection itself through antimicrobial therapy and, in severe cases, surgical intervention.
If you suspect you have malignant otitis externa or are experiencing hearing loss, pain, or other symptoms related to the ear, it is crucial to seek prompt medical attention. Malignant otitis externa requires timely and appropriate medical management to prevent complications.