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Malignant External Otitis. Symptoms and Treatment.

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Malignant external otitis, sometimes known as necrotizing external otitis, is a rare and potentially serious condition of the external ear.

Despite its rarity, it is important to understand its characteristics and consider risk factors, signs and symptoms, causes, and treatment options.

What is Malignant External Otitis?

It is a severe infection of the external ear canal, the part of the ear that extends from the auricle to the eardrum.

Unlike common external otitis, which is usually a mild and treatable bacterial infection, malignant external otitis involves a deeper infection that can affect the bone and surrounding tissues.

This condition can be debilitating and potentially life-threatening if not treated properly.

¿Qué Es La Otitis Externa Maligna?

Risk Factors:

Risk factors that increase the likelihood of developing malignant external otitis include:


People with poorly controlled diabetes have a higher risk of developing this condition.

Weakened Immune System:

Those with weakened immune systems, such as HIV patients or those undergoing chemotherapy, are more susceptible.

Advanced Age:

Malignant external otitis is more common in older adults.

Signos Y Síntomas:

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Severe ear pain, which may radiate to the jaw and neck.
  • Ear discharge with an unpleasant odor.
  • Swelling and redness of the auricle and external ear canal.
  • Hearing loss.
  • Fever and general weakness.

These symptoms are more severe than those of common external otitis and require immediate medical attention due to the seriousness of the condition.

Causes of Malignant External Otitis:

The primary cause of malignant external otitis is a bacterial infection, most commonly caused by the bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

This bacteria can penetrate deep into the tissues and cause an infection that affects the bone and surrounding blood vessels.

Treatment for Malignant External Otitis:

The treatment of malignant external otitis is an urgent matter and requires specialized medical attention. Treatment approaches may include:

  • Intravenous Antibiotics: Potent antibiotics are administered intravenously to treat the infection.
  • Surgical Debridement: In some cases, a surgical procedure may be necessary to remove infected tissue and drain the affected area.
  • Risk Factor Management: To prevent recurrences, it is crucial to control underlying medical conditions such as diabetes and maintain a healthy immune system.
  • Post-Treatment Care: After treatment, ongoing follow-up is required to ensure that the infection is under control.

In summary, malignant external otitis is an uncommon but serious condition affecting the external ear.

Early identification of signs and symptoms and seeking immediate medical attention are crucial for a successful prognosis. Don’t wait any longer!

Experiencing severe ear pain and other concerning symptoms?

Don't ignore it. Seek immediate medical attention. Contact Dr. Lech.

Testimonials from Dr. Lech
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Laura Ruiz Ruiz
La verdad mi hija y yo nos sentimos muy bien atendidas por el el dr. Lech, estamos siguiendo el tratamiento lo cual ha estado haciendo un buen efecto en ella y mejorando su calidad de vida. Muy agradecida siempre!!!
Yanixa Baloy
Yanixa Baloy
Excelente Dr. Muy amable y excelente atención..lo recomiendo.
Xiomara Pinillo
Xiomara Pinillo
Buen Dia Esperando todo se encuentren bien.- Lo que puedo comentarle es q el Dr. Lech es una excelente persona, no solo como medico sino como un ser humano, es muy especial en la atencion a sus paciente.- Soy fiel testigo de eso porque lo he vivido y he escuchado de otras persona y colegas. Bendiciones a tod@s.-
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Michel Guerrero
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