Management of Ear Foreign Body


Type of Foreign BodyManagement
InsectsImmobilize with lidocaine 2%, olive oil, mineral oil, or alcohol drops, then flush out with water.
Seeds (e.g., beans, peas)Urgent ENT referral for removal by suction or hook. (Avoid irrigation or oil to prevent swelling.)
Super GlueManual removal after 1-2 days (post desquamation) or refer to ENT if the eardrum is involved.
Earwax Build-upUse a few drops of olive oil to soften hard wax.
BatteriesImmediate ENT referral for removal within 24 hours.
Spherical Objects (e.g., pencil rubber)Remove using a hook.
In Intellectually Disabled PersonsENT removal under general anaesthesia.


Referral to ENT for Ear Foreign Body Removal:


i. Difficulty in Removal: When there is any challenge in removing the foreign body.

ii. Sedation Required: If the patient needs sedation to facilitate removal.

iii. Uncooperative Patient: If the patient is uncooperative (e.g., a person with autism, intellectual disabilities, or a very young child).

iv. Tympanic Membrane (TM) Perforation: If the TM is perforated.

v. Adhesive Contact with TM: If an adhesive (e.g., super glue) is in contact with the TM.

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