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Is Fluid Discharge a Sign of a Hole in the Eardrum?

by Dr. Christopher Beuhler, Audiology Expert
November 25, 2016

Question: My grandmother is experiencing fluid discharge from her ears. Could that be a sign of a hole in the eardrum? How do I ascertain this?

Answer: One of the most important things to do is examine this apparent "discharge" carefully. Much of the time any discharge that comes from the ear is going to be wax.  However if examination of the alleged substance appears to be a white or yellow colored liquid, then there is a real possibility that the eardrum has been ruptured. The only way to determine this is to take the individual in question to a physician or a hearing healthcare professional so that a scope can be used to look inside the ear and view the eardrum.  A rupture in the eardrum will be plainly evident to whichever professional viewing the ear.

Dr. Christopher Beuhler, Au.D. is a Board-Certified Audiologist. He is also Founder of Home Audiology Services, P.C. providing diagnostic hearing evaluations, hearing aid evluations, auditory training and rehabilitation, among others.

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