A previously healthy 6-year-old female presents to the pediatric clinic for ear pain. Her mother reports that three days ago she developed a sore throat followed by a cough, runny nose, and fatigue. She recorded a temperature of 101.5 F (38.6 C) at home that responded well to antipyretics. Yesterday the child began to develop left ear pain. She had a history of ear infections as a toddler, but none recently. No history of ventilation tubes. The mother reports that siblings at home had similar symptoms without the ear pain that have since resolved. This image of the left ear is obtained with the Wispr digital otoscope.
The child has acute otitis media (AOM).
This is a classic presentation of acute otitis media (AOM) – a prodrome of viral symptoms followed by ear pain. The image obtained is also a textbook characteristic of AOM. The notable features of this presentation include bulging of the eardrum, erythema (redness), and loss of the typical bony associated with the tympanic membrane (eardrum). The dimple seen in the bulging doughnut of AOM is due to the umbo of the malleus.
Compare a normal ear to this ear with AOM.
Acute Otitis Media (AOM)
Treatment of AOM would typically be a course of oral antibiotics.