Child Health  |  OME Pathway - Post-Operative Grommet Care information.

Child Health

OME Pathway - Post-Operative Grommet Care information.

  • Grommets usually remain in the eardrum for 6-18 months (depending on type) and normally extrude spontaneously.

  • Surgical removal is rarely required – usually after 2 years if the patient has had no further problems. Occasionally, persistent discharge not responsive to ear drops develops due to the formation of biofilms and this necessitates grommet removal.

  • There are not any problems flying with grommets if the tubes are open, as the ears do not need to equalise.

  • Showering is preferable to bathing.

  • Bathing – avoid ear immersion. Prevent soapy water entering ears. Use ear plugs made of blu-tak, ready made ear plugs, and cotton wool with Vaseline.

  • Spa pools – no immersion of the head under water.

  • Treated swimming pool water and sea water – no precautions necessary except in a small group of patients who develop ear infections easily.

If grommets discharge persistently post operatively aural toileting is required and topical ear drops. Sofradex is considered to be safe for 4-5 days treatment when used in the presence of inflammation. Ciproxin is probably a safer choice but is considerably more expensive. Oral antibiotics are significantly less effective.

Last updated : Thursday, May 18, 2017
Next review date : Friday, May 18,2018

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