What is the medical treatment for tympanic membrane perforation (TMP)?

Updated: Dec 14, 2020
  • Author: Robert A Saadi, MD; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Medical therapy for perforations is directed at controlling otorrhea. Take into account ototoxicity risk from topically applied eardrops when treating ear infections concurrent with tympanic membrane perforation (TMP). Infection alone occasionally can cause sensorineural hearing loss. Clinical toxicity from eardrops in the presence of ear infection has not been demonstrated unequivocally, although experiments in animals clearly demonstrate a correlation. Legal implications of administration of ototoxic eardrops preceding sensorineural hearing loss are clear. For this reason, avoid eardrops containing gentamicin, neomycin sulfate, or tobramycin in the presence of TMP. Avoiding contamination of the middle ear space with water via the TMP is critical in minimizing otorrhea from a perforation.

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