Chronic ear infections, also called chronic otitis media, is an inflammation or infection of the middle ear. Chronic means recurring or persistent. Inflammation or infection of the middle ear occurs when the eustachian tube to that ear is blocked.
Back to Health A to Z. Ear infections are very common, particularly in children. You do not always need to see a GP for an ear infection as they often get better on their own within 3 days.
Chronic ear infection is an ear infection that does not heal. A recurring ear infection can act like a chronic ear infection. This is also known as recurring acute otitis media.
The Eustachian tube, which drains fluids away from the middle ear, may become plugged due to a viral or bacterial infection, allowing a buildup of fluid to press against the eardrum. Adults are more likely to get infections from swimming, injuries such a foreign body in the earor following upper respiratory illnesses. The symptoms may be milder for recurring ear infections compared to more acute forms, may come and go, and affect one or both ears.
Ear infections may be more common in children than in adults, but grown-ups are still susceptible to these infections. Unlike childhood ear infections, which are often minor and pass quickly, adult ear infections are frequently signs of a more serious health problem. There are three main types of ear infections.
Ear infections are often considered a childhood disease. It almost seems a rite of passage for children to experience repeat ear infections. Then, around the beginning of their teenage years, it often stops entirely.
An ear infection sometimes called acute otitis media is an infection of the middle ear, the air-filled space behind the eardrum that contains the tiny vibrating bones of the ear. Children are more likely than adults to get ear infections. Because ear infections often clear up on their own, treatment may begin with managing pain and monitoring the problem.
Otitis media is an infection of the middle ear that causes inflammation redness and swelling and a build-up of fluid behind the eardrum. The main symptoms include:. In some cases, a hole may develop in the eardrum perforated eardrum and pus may run out of the ear.