From the category archives: Raleigh Capitol Ear, Nose & Throat

Ear problems are our specialty! From wax build up to ear tubes our ENT specialists in Raleigh and Cary can help you.

Earwax: What's the Scoop?

It's a disgusting, gooey substance that builds up in the ear, creating a nasty yellow-brown clump. Earwax is considered gross and unappealing, so everyone makes an effort to keep ears clean. Most of the time, this involves a cotton "Q-tip"-type applicator. But did you know that ear, nose and throat doctors usually advise against using this method? Using cotton swabs could put your hearing at risk. Find out more about earwax, and how it can actually help you.


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Wax Impaction

Cerumen (wax) impaction occurs when the external ear canal becomes blocked by an excessive amount of normally occurring wax. Cerumen is made by tiny glands in the outer aspect of the ear canal. Wax is very beneficial and its purpose includes protecting the outer ear from moisture and other things which might enter the canal. In most people, the ear is self cleaning and the wax will come out periodically on its own. In others, cerumen may accumulate faster than it extrudes itself, leading to blockage and hearing loss or a feeling of fullness or pressure. The most common cause of cerumen impaction is placing some object in the ear to try to remove the wax (Q-tip, bobby pin, or the top of a pen). In addition, water may sometimes get around the impacted cerumen and the warm and dark environment may lead to a bacterial of fungal infection. The Physicians at Capitol Ear, Nose, & Throat recommend that the first time you experience cerumen impaction, you should be evaluated by a physician to make sure there is ...

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Ear Tubes

What are ear tubes? Ear tubes, also known as PE tubes or Pressure Equalization tubes, are small cylindrical silicone or plastic tubes that are surgically placed into the ear drum. When are ear tubes necessary? Ear tubes are typically placed for 4 reasons: Recurrent Otitis Media. This is the most common reason for ear tube placement for children between the ages of 1 and 6 years old. Tubes are generally considered for patients who are having 5 or more ear infections per year. Persistent Acute Otitis Media. Antibiotic resistant bacteria are becoming more prevalent and we are seeing more and more ear infections that will not clear with oral antibiotics. If an acute infection is not clearing with 2-3 courses of broad spectrum antibiotics, ear tubes are frequently recommended. Otitis Media with Effusion. Middle ear fluid is common for several weeks following an ear infection. If however, fluid persists for 3 or more months, ear tubes are frequently recommended. Eustachian tube dysfunction. Whi ...

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