- May present with otalgia, irritability, decreased hearing, anorexia, vomiting, or fever, usually in the presence of an ongoing viral respiratory infection.
- Physical examination will reveal a bulging, opacified tympanic membrane with decreased mobility. The membrane may be white, yellow, pink, or red.
- Diagnosis is generally made with conventional otoscopy. Additional tests might include pneumatic otoscopy or tympanometry to confirm the presence of an effusion.
- Treatment includes pain control with analgesics and might include antibiotics.
- Complications include perforation of the tympanic membrane and, rarely, mastoiditis, seventh cranial nerve palsy, or sigmoid sinus thrombosis.
Last updated: Apr 09, 2013