External otitis in children

External otitis in children

External otitis is an inflammation of the ear flag, most often caused by an infection of bacterial or viral nature. Also known as the "swimmer's ear", external otitis can occur more easily in children who swim in water with high chlorine content and does not properly clean their water ears or in children who suffer from allergies, eczema, psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis.


The infection is often caused by a bacterium or a virus, but it can also be cutaneous (boiled) or caused by a fungus. The trauma of the external auditory canal, sometimes produced by aggressive cleaning of the ear flag, is another cause that leads to the appearance of external otitis.


The first symptoms that announce the appearance of external otitis are:

- itching in the ear;
- decreased quality of hearing in the affected ear;
- pain in the ear;
- inflammation and redness of the ear flag;
- a white fluid leaking from the ear.

Lice and fever only occur in very serious cases.


Staphylococcal infections are the ones that most often cause serious complications. External otitis can become "malignant" when inflammation also affects bone tissue. This complication is most common in children who have diabetes or who have a depressed immune system. Infection with the pyocyanin bacillus can also lead to paralysis of the face, and hospitalization is necessary to prevent the onset of osteomyelitis (spread of infection in the bone tissue).


The treatment indicated for external otitis depends on the cause of the infection that led to its appearance. Antibiotics (in the form of drops, or given orally for serious cases), analgesics or corticosteroids may be used. If the external otitis has been caused by a boil, its incision is not recommended to prevent the spread of the infection.

If your baby shows symptoms of otitis, it is important to consult a doctor quickly. It will examine the eardrum to determine if otitis is internal or external and will begin treatment quickly to avoid complications.

Tags Otita Infection