A tympanic drainage or middle ear drainage is a drain to medium-to long -term ventilation of the middle ear - including the OME - by the insertion of a so-called ventilation tube in the eardrum. Before the opening of the eardrum through a paracentesis is required. In children, the procedure is usually done under general anesthesia, in adults the ear can be locally anesthetized. A standard tympanostomy tube ( " collar button " ) has an opening diameter of 1 to 1.5 mm and is usually repelled spontaneously after about 9-12 months or from the doctor. If a longer length of stay desired, a T- tympanostomy tube ( "permanent tympanostomy tubes " ) will be used. In children, the procedure is usually combined with an adenoidectomy (removal of the adenoids ), in many cases to a removal of the tonsils ( tonsillectomy ) or their partial removal ( tonsillectomy ) in young children.
Patients carrying a tympanostomy tube or T- tube are particularly at risk when dealing with water. If cold water through the passageway into the middle ear, a, acute dizziness may occur. This can result in the swimming pool to life-threatening situation. Furthermore, in the water to microorganisms into the middle ear and can cause inflammation there.
To prevent the entry of water into the middle ear, the ear canal is sealed by means of plugs or cotton with Vaseline. To achieve even better protection, it is recommended that in addition to wearing a waterproof bathing cap when bathing or swimming. If water has entered the middle ear, the patient could bring as a first measure to the side, keeping the affected ear down. Then necessarily a doctor should be consulted if the water was contaminated.