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What does a bulging tympanic membrane indicate?

What does a bulging tympanic membrane indicate?

A bulging, red, immobile tympanic membrane is highly associated with acute otitis media.

What causes bulging tympanic membrane?

A bulging eardrum can be caused by many different things, such as an ear infection. It can affect hearing because it impairs the eardrum’s ability to vibrate and transmit sound. When the eardrum is inflamed, it can cause a person to experience fullness in their ear, ear pain, and pressure.

Why do eardrums bulge?

Bacteria or viruses are usually the cause. The infection causes inflammation and swelling of the eustachian tube. The tube narrows and fluid builds behind the eardrum, causing pressure and pain. Children have shorter and narrower eustachian tubes than adults.

How is AOM diagnosed?

An AOM diagnosis requires moderate to severe bulging of the tympanic membrane, new onset of otorrhea not caused by otitis externa, or mild bulging of the tympanic membrane associated with recent onset of ear pain (less than 48 hours) or erythema.

What does a healthy tympanic membrane look like?

A normal TM is a translucent pale gray. An opaque yellow or blue TM is consistent with MEE. Dark red indicates a recent trauma or blood behind the TM. A dark pink or lighter red TM is consistent with AOM or hyperemia of the TM caused by crying, coughing, or nose blowing.

What should a normal tympanic membrane look like?

1) Color/shape-pearly grey, shiny, translucent, with no bulging or retraction. 2) Consistency – smooth.

How do you treat a bulging eardrum?


  1. Apply a warm cloth or warm water bottle to the affected ear.
  2. Use over-the-counter pain relief drops for ears. Or, ask the provider about prescription eardrops to relieve pain.
  3. Take over-the-counter medicines such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain or fever. DO NOT give aspirin to children.

What is mee ear?

As further evidence, ligation of the eustachian tube in animals invariably leads to the formation of a persistent middle ear effusion (MEE). Once the acute inflammation and bacterial infection have resolved, a failure of the middle ear clearance mechanism allows middle ear effusion to persist.

What are the five risk factors for otitis media?

The risk factors for ear infections are cultural, socioeconomic, and environmental (e.g., living in crowded places, living in large families, the duration of breastfeeding, smoking status), genetic (e.g., craniofacial anomalies such as those characteristic in Down syndrome and cleft palate), nutritional, and medical ( …

What happens if otitis media is left untreated?

Although the hearing loss caused by otitis media is usually temporary, untreated otitis media may lead to permanent hearing impairment. Persistent fluid in the middle ear and chronic otitis media can reduce a child’s hearing at a time that is critical for speech and language development.

Can you touch your eardrum with your finger?

This includes fingers, cotton swabs, safety pins and pencils. Any of these can easily rupture the eardrum. Loud noise. Any loud noise can lead to a perforation in the tympanic membrane.

What color is a cholesteatoma?

Cholesteatoma on Undersurface of the Eardrum 1) The tympanic membrane (eardrum) is not normal appearing. Instead of being nearly see-through, there is a dense whitish color to this eardrum. Cholesteatoma (skin growth) is a whitish mass that may be adherent to the undersurface of the eardrum, as seen in this example.

Are there any stock photos of the tympanic membrane?

Browse 758 tympanic membrane stock photos and images available, or search for otitis media or eustachian tube to find more great stock photos and pictures. Human ear cutaway diagram. Anatomy illustration. Human ear cutaway diagram; anatomy illustration. tympanic membrane stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

What does it mean when your eardrum is bulging?

A bulging eardrum is an inflamed tympanic membrane. The tympanic membrane, also called the eardrum, is a thin flap of skin in the ear over the ear canal. When sound enters the ear, the eardrum vibrates. This vibration moves the tiny bones in the middle ear, sending sounds into the inner ear.

Where is the tympanic tube located in the ear?

Another feature that is commonly seen is the shadow of the tympanic cavity; this is where the Eustachian tube is located. This is in the anterior-inferior portion of the eardrum. For the eardrum to vibrate properly from sound waves, the pressure on both sides of the eardrum most be the same.

What causes a bulging eardrum in a swimmer?

Swimmer’s ear can cause the eardrum to bulge if the infection spreads down the ear canal and the eardrum becomes inflamed due to the buildup of pus. Typically, a bulging eardrum is caused by another health condition. Most of the conditions that can cause it to occur are mild or moderate in nature and easily treatable. When to See a Doctor