Which lab studies are useful in the diagnosis of otitis externa (OE)?

Updated: Mar 09, 2020
  • Author: Ariel A Waitzman, MD, FRCSC; Chief Editor: Ravindhra G Elluru, MD, PhD  more...
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Answer

Typically, laboratory studies are not needed, but they may be helpful if the patient is immunocompromised, if the usual treatment measures are ineffective, or if a fungal cause is suspected. Tests may include the following:

  • Gram stain and culture of any discharge from the auditory canal
  • Blood glucose level
  • Urine dipstick

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