Pharmacy Clinical Pearl of the Day: Swimmer’s Ear

Swimmer’s ear is often brought on by water that remains in the ear, creating a moist environment that aids the growth of bacteria.

Clinical Pearl of the Day: Swimmer’s Ear

Swimmer's ear is an infection in the outer ear canal, which runs from the eardrum to the outside of the head.

Insight:

  • Swimmer's ear is also known as otitis externa.
  • It's often brought on by water that remains in the ear, creating a moist environment that aids the growth of bacteria.
  • Putting fingers, cotton swabs, or other objects in the ears also can lead to swimmer's ear by damaging the thin layer of skin lining the ear canal.
  • Symptoms may include itching, slight redness, mild discomfort, drainage from the ear, decreased or muffled hearing.
  • Excessive moisture can cause the infection of swimmer’s ear.
  • Treatment includes cleaning of the ear by a health care professional, using acidic solutions to help restore the ear’s normal antibacterial environment, using steroids to reduce inflammation, using antibiotics to fight bacteria, and using antifungals to fight infections caused by fungus
  • Some patients may take Tylenol or Aleve for pain caused by the infection.

Sources:

Swimmer's ear - Symptoms and causes - Mayo Clinic

swimmer's ear - Google Search