otitis externa

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otitis externa

[ō′tīd·əs ek′stər·nə]
(medicine)
Inflammation of the external ear.
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Long-term exposure of the ear canal to water--from swimming or when water is trapped in the ear--as well as hearing aid use and excessively cleaning out earwax with cotton swabs, can break down the skin in the ear canal and lead to swimmer's ear.
Combined with increased sweating in higher temperatures, the peaking popularity of earbud use has caused an uptick in swimmer's ear in runners.
For instance, you don't usually get swimmer's ear from taking baths or showers.
Swimmer's ear -- also called otitis externa -- is different from a regular ear infection.
Dogs who love to swim can be at risk for the kind of otitis externa that's the canine equivalent of swimmer's ear.
If it is swimmer's ear, then taking paracetamol or ibuprofen will relieve the pain.
A study in the agency's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report is the first to look at the national costs associated with swimmer's ear, a common condition in which pathogens proliferate in a moist environment in the ear canal (MMWR 2011 ;60:605-9).
None of the ambulatory care patients required admission, but almost 3% of those who visited an emergency department for swimmer's ear were hospitalized.
If you think your child has swimmer's ear, he should be seen by a pediatrician or other health care provider.
Lead author Vivek Kaushik, a consultant otolaryngologist at Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport, England found topical treatment effectively helps control the pain and inflammation of swimmer's ear and may even cut down the use of oral antibiotics.
So far, MinuteClinic owners say their model is catching on with consumers who can seek care in 15 minutes or less for such illnesses as allergies, pink eye and swimmer's ear, as well as skin conditions such as cold sores, minor burns and wart removal.
Antiseptic or antibiotic ear drops should be the front-line treatment for people suffering from swimmer's ear, while restraint should be exercised in using oral antibiotics, according to treatment guidelines issued by a panel of specialists that includes the chairman of Otolaryngology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas.