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FAQs

Can my child have ear infections after tubes are inserted?

Yes, but infections will usually present with painless drainage from the affected ear and are easily treated with topical antibiotic drops rather than oral antibiotics. Middle ear infections after tube insertion generally occur from either water accidentally getting into the ear or from a severe upper respiratory infection with bacteria entering the middle ear from the back of the nose via the Eustachian tubes.

How long will my childʼs tubes remain in his/her ears?

Ventilation tubes generally remain in place for at least 6 months, but usually work their way out of the ear drums at some point between 1 and 2 years after insertion. The tube will generally remain in the ear canal until the next regular follow-up appointment, at which time the tube is removed. If tubes remains in place for 2 years or longer, we will usually recommend removal in the Operating Room.

Are surgeries performed by my doctor or by a resident trainee?

All surgeries are performed by the doctors of Advanced Otolaryngology Associates. While we are involved in medical student and pediatric resident teaching, we do not have surgical residents with us in the Operating Room. Our partners frequently assist one another during Head & Neck procedures, and we have skilled Physicians Assistants and RN First Assistants available for additional support in the St. Peterʼs University Hospital ORs.

Iʼm told that you donʼt remove tonsils any more. Is that true?

No. While antibiotics have dramatically reduced the number of tonsillectomies in young children over the past 50 years, there are still plenty of patients who experience infections frequently enough to justify removal of the tonsils and adenoids. This has become much more common in older children, teens and young adults. Airway obstruction issues are another justification for tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy. Signs of airway obstruction include snoring, chronic mouth breathing, and chronic fatigue/ sleepiness.

I frequently experience pain in my forehead and/or mid-face. Does that mean I have a sinus condition?

No. Most patients who present to Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists with a chief complaint of headache or facial pain do not have sinus disease. Sinus infections are a chronic inflammatory process, and generally present with a spectrum of symptoms, including nasal congestion, nasal or post-nasal discharge, fatigue or malaise, and perhaps some pain or pressure in the affected areas. Patients who exclusively complain of pain generally have an “atypical” pain disorder, often the result of migraine activity or nerve impingement in the neck with a pain referral pattern to the mid-face or forehead.

Is it of added benefit to obtain my hearing aids through an Ear, Nose & Throat practice?

A resounding yes, for two main reasons:

1. Comprehensiveness of Care: Because there are numerous causes of hearing loss, some of which requiring various types of additional evaluation and/or management, it is of great benefit to be evaluated by both an Ear, Nose & Throat doctor as well as a skilled audiologist. In addition, having Otolaryngologists on premises provides the added benefit of having the skilled professionals available to take care of associated or unrelated ear problems that may arise, primarily in the form of ear wax buildup, but also taking the form of ear canal infections or even the occasional foreign material in the ear canal.

 

2. Trust: Because we are primarily a medical/surgical practice with deep roots to the community over the past 25 years, it is particulary important for the professionals in every aspect of the practice to conduct his/her business at all times in the manner that protects the reputation of the practice. In other words, it is always in the best interest of the practice to recommend that which is in the best interest of each patient.

Does everyone with a hearing loss need hearing aids?

No. The day to day hearing demands of each individual, along with the type and severity of his/her hearing loss, determine the projected benefit for that patient if he/she were to pursue aiding. The greater the benefit in daily functioning and overall quality of life, the more the answer to this question becomes a “yes”.

The most important role of our team of professionals is to properly and accurately counsel our patients on what their likely hearing benefits are (so that accurate expectations are established), while recommending the optimal aiding device that meets the needs of the individual while also paying close attention to any financial constraints that may exist.

Why are Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists important?

Because so many complaints that patients encounter in the head and neck region are very non-specific as to their cause, the Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist is uniquely qualified to determine the source of the problem. Such complaints include ear and facial pain, facial pressure, hearing loss, nasal obstruction, and numerous others.