Which bacteria are less common causes of acute otitis media (AOM)?

Updated: Sep 25, 2019
  • Author: John D Donaldson, MD, FRCSC, FACS; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Answer

Except in neonates and children with chronic disease, few other pathogens have been demonstrated in aspirates from the middle ears of immunologically intact individuals.

S aureus is rarely recovered, except in Japan, where studies indicate a somewhat higher incidence (up to 10%). Mycobacterium tuberculosis is most often associated with chronic otitis media but should be considered when a patient presents with painless otorrhea as an initial complaint and/or has multiple tympanic perforations. Any patient with a compromised immune system may be at risk for this opportunistic infection. Chlamydia pneumonia is an uncommon but significant pathogen in persons with AOM and responds only to macrolide therapy.


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