Foreign Bodies In The Ent Aural foreign bodies

Foreign body in the ear typically entraps in the EAC. Diagnosis is usually straightforward. Foreign bodies may be classified as living insects, vegetable and inorganic materials. Living insect

Figure 20.7. Cockroach in the EAC.

Figure 20.8. Plain X-ray of the nose showing a button battery in the left nasal fossa.

in the EAC (Fig. 20.7) is most disturbing. It should first be killed with a non-irritant eardrop such as olive oil, paraffin oil or cooking oil. The insect should then be removed by suction or by fine forceps. Vegetable foreign bodies are best removed by curettage and suction. Syringing is contraindicated as the foreign body may swell and subsequent removal is more difficult. Inorganic foreign bodies if diagnosed early may be removed with forceps, suction, syringing or curettage depending on their shape. Inorganic foreign bodies, being inert, can be left in the external canal for a long time without much symptoms. Foreign bodies left in the EAC can sometimes become very adherent to the canal skin and may require general anaesthesia for their removal. For young children or the mentally deranged individuals in general, whenever a foreign body is found in one ear, the other ear and perhaps the nostrils should also be checked. Simultaneous multiple foreign bodies may rarely be present. Multiple attempts at removing any foreign body in an uncooperative patient is inadvisable as tympanic membrane perforation and ossicular chain injury may occur. Under this circumstance, general anaesthesia may be warranted.

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