Diagnosis of Glue ear

Glue ear is clinically known as otitis media with effusion and is the most common sign of glue ear is hearing loss, which can affect one or both ears.
For the Diagnosis of Glue ear, Otoscopy and ear microscopy is used to evaluate the changes in the external ear canal and eardrum. Furthermore, other tests, such as tympanometry, may also be used to examine the middle ear.
Tympanometry measures pressure differences between the middle ear and outer ear by measuring how easily the eardrum vibrates back and forth.
To measure whether the fluid is causing hearing loss, a separate hearing test or audiometry is necessary.


Most cases of glue ear don’t require treatment as the condition will improve spontaneously, usually within three months. Nasal lavage with saline solution and exercises with a nasal balloon are recommended, to ensure a quick recovery. 

Treatment is normally only recommended when symptoms last longer than three months and the hearing loss is thought to be significant enough 

Glue Ear Treatment.ent

Glue Ear Treatment

to interfere with a child’s speech and language development.

In these circumstances, glue ear can usually be treated using minor surgery, which involves placing small tubes (grommets) in the ear to help drain away the fluid.

Sometimes adenoid hyperplasia may cause obstruction of the Eustachian tubes and therefore be the reason for glue ear. In these cases adenoidectomy is performed and very often at the same time as a grommet insertion.
  • Kerschner JE, Preciado D. Otitis media. In: Kliegman RM, St. Geme JW, Blum NJ, Shah SS, Tasker RC, Wilson KM, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 21st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 658.
  • Pelton SI. Otitis externa, otitis media, and mastoiditis. In: Bennett JE, Dolin R, Blaser MJ, eds. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett’s Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 61.
  • Rosenfeld RM, Shin JJ, Schwartz SR, et al. Clinical practice guideline: Otitis media with effusion executive summary (update). Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2016;154(2):201-214.