St George Private Hospital
Part of Ramsay Health Care


What are Grommets?

This is a common surgical procedure where a small rice sized tube is inserted into the eardrum allowing middle ear fluid to drain and ventilate in the setting of middle ear infection. This improves hearing and assists with normal speech and and learning especially important for the children development.

Written by Dr Tony Kuo, ENT specialist

What is Exotosis?

Exotosis or swimmers ear is an abnormal growth of bone in the ear canals secondary to repeated cold water or cold air exposure common in swimmers or surfers. Water trapping, ear wax impaction and repeated ear infection can result in severe cases which will require surgical removal.

Written by Dr Tony Kuo, ENT specialist

Ear drum perforation or hole in the eardrum often results from trauma or infection. Traumatic perforations are usually due to insertion of cotton buds, ear curettes or foreign objects. This can lead to hearing loss and recurrent ear infections. Small eardrum perforations tend to heal without surgery in vast majority of healthy individuals. Surgical repair of the ear drum will be required for closure in non healing perforations.

Written by Dr Tony Kuo, ENT specialist

This is a hereditary disease with abnormal bone formation near the middle ear causing hearing loss. Hearing aid is usually indicated in moderate cases and surgery to replace the abnormal stapes bone (stapes surgery) can be considered in severe cases.

Written by Dr Tony Kuo, ENT specialist

What is Cholesteatoma?

A cholesteatoma is an abnormal collection of keratin or skin cyst in the middle ear (compartment behind the eardrum). This can be due to Eustachian tube dysfunction (tube connecting the back of the nose to the ear), eardrum perforations and rarely as a complication from previous ear surgery. Due to the proximity of the middle ear to vital brain and nerve structures, early recognition and treatment will be required to prevent complications.

Written by Dr Tony Kuo, ENT specialist

What is glue ear?

Glue ear is a common condition that affects the middle ear of children with the highest incidence occurring in children between three and six years of age. Glue ear (or fluid) is an accumulation of thick, "gluey" fluid in the middle ear (ie behind the eardrum) usually causing earache and partial deafness. Commonly it is the result Eustachian tube blockage from an upper respiratory infection, large adenoids, nasal allergy, poor nasal function, cleft palate, an immature Eustachian tube and a number of other factors. In the presence of bacteria, this fluid may become infected leading to an infected or abscessed middle ear. When infection does not develop, the fluid remains until the Eustachian tube again begins to function normally, at which time the fluid is absorbed or drains down the Eustachian tube into the throat. Various medical therapies are used to help clear the fluid. Most resolve spontaneously over two to three months but the remainder may persist for many months or indefinitely, unless the fluid is cleared and the middle ear artificially ventilated by a small tube.

Written by Dr Zoran Becvarvski, ENT specialist