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Ear infection with cold: Causes, Acute vs. Chronic, & Recovery Time


Causes, Acute vs. Chronic, & Recovery Time

What Causes an Ear Infection?

The middle ear is a small space behind the ear drum that is supposed to be well ventilated by air that normally passes up from behind the nose, through the Eustachian tube, keeping the middle ear clean and dry. When there is not enough fresh air ventilating the middle ear, such as when the Eustachian tube is clogged or blocked, the area becomes damp, stagnant, and warm, a perfect breeding ground for germs.

In children and infants, the Eustachian tube is often too soft or immature and has a harder time staying open. Allergies, post nasal drainage, sinus infections, common cold viruses and adenoid problems can all interfere with the Eustachian tube’s ability to let air pass into the middle ear.

When the doctor looks at the eardrum, he or she will see that it is red, often bulging, and be able to make the diagnosis of an ear infection.

For children, the most common trigger of an ear infection is an upper respiratory viral infection, such as a cold or the flu. These disorders can make the Eustachian tube so swollen that air can no longer flow into the middle ear. Allergies — to pollen, dust, animal dander, or food — can produce the same effect as a cold or flu, as can smoke, fumes, and other environmental toxins. Bacteria can cause an ear infection directly, but usually these organisms come on the heels of a viral infection or an allergic reaction, quickly finding their way into the warm, moist environment of the middle ear. Invading bacteria can wreak major havoc, turning inflammation into infection and provoking fevers.

Among the bacteria most often found in infected middle ears are the same varieties responsible for many cases of sinusitis, pneumonia, and other respiratory infections. According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (ear, nose, and throat physicians), the conjugate pneumococcal vaccine is very effective against several strains of the most common bacteria that cause ear infections. This vaccine is routinely given to infants and toddlers to prevent meningitis, pneumonia, and blood infections. Your child’s doctor should advise you on the use of this vaccine, which may help to prevent at least some ear infections.

Ear infections occur in various patterns. A single, isolated case is called an acute ear infection (acute otitis media). If the condition clears up but comes back as many as three times in a 6-month period (or four times in a single year), the person is said to have recurrent ear infections (recurrent acute otitis media). This usually indicates the Eustachian tube isn’t working well. A fluid buildup in the middle ear without infection is termed otitis media with effusion, a condition where fluid stays in the ear because it is not well ventilated, but germs have not started to grow.

In recent years, scientists have identified the characteristics of people most likely to suffer recurrent middle ear infections:

  • Males
  • Individuals with a family history of ear infections
  • Babies who are bottle-fed formula (babies who are fed breast milk have fewer ear infections)
  • Children who attend day care centers
  • People living in households with tobacco smokers
  • People with abnormalities of the palate, such as a cleft palate
  • People with poor immune systems or chronic respiratory diseases, such as cystic fibrosis and asthma


How Can I Prevent an Ear Infection?

Remove as many environmental pollutants from your home as you can, including:

  • Dust
  • Cleaning fluid and solvents
  • Tobacco smoke

Also, reduce your or your child’s exposure to people with colds, and control allergies.  

Taking steps to prevent colds, the flu, and other illnesses can prevent some, but not all, ear infections. Here are some important things to do:

  • Be sure everyone in your household, including your children, get the proper vaccines when recommended. That includes flu and pneumococcal vaccines.
  • Make hand washing a habit that becomes part of the family’s routine.
  • If possible, avoid group care for children, especially during cold and flu season.

Because formula-fed babies are more likely to get ear infections, it is better to breastfeed your infant for the first 6 to 12 months, if possible, to prevent ear infections.

What Does an Earache Really Mean?

It’s a scenario most everyone has faced; the first signs you’re coming down with something: congestion, coughing, sore throat, and sneezing. All signs point to it being a cold. But then your ear starts hurting too. Is it really a cold? Or could it be an ear infection? It can be hard to tell the difference sometimes, but there are a few distinguishing symptoms between these two ailments. Let’s take a look at the differences to make sure you’re getting the right medication for the necessary relief.

When Earaches Mean a Cold

While it’s not commonly thought of, the common cold can actually cause ear pain. During a cold, fluid in the middle ear can accumulate, which puts pressure on the eardrum, causing inflammation and pain.

If the ear pain is caused by a cold, it should go away as the sinuses drain and pressure on the eardrum disappears. The best way to get rid of the cold—and the ear pain—is to treat the cold symptoms. In the meantime, if some relief of the ear pain is needed, try taking an over-the-counter pain reliever like Tylenol, Advil, or Motrin.

When Earaches Mean Ear Infection

If the ear pain doesn’t go away on its own as the cold is getting better, more than likely it’s actually an ear infection. Other symptoms of an ear infection are:

– Intense ear pain,

– Mild hearing loss

– Fever, dizziness, loss of appetite, and difficulty sleeping

– Loss of appetite, and difficulty sleeping.

A doctors visit, to an ENT physician, is the best way to determine whether your ear pain is caused by a cold or ear infection. After an official diagnosis, you’ll get the necessary antibiotics to help you heal. It could take some time for the pain to fully go away after the antibiotics are done. This is because fluid can be left behind on the eardrum for a few weeks. But if weeks turn into months and the pain persists, another doctor’s appointment may be necessary to discuss any additional problems.

If you are experiencing ear pain and suspect you may have more than a common cold, give us a call today. At Premier Medical, our knowledgeable ENT professionals can help you diagnose the problem and get rid of the pain.

Coughs, colds and ear infections in children

Colds and flu symptoms can be very similar to the symptoms of COVID-19. Even if your symptoms are mild, get tested for COVID-19 immediately — use the colds and flu Symptom Checker if you’re not sure what to do.

It is common for young children to get the odd cough, cold or ear infection. Read further to find out more about these common childhood ailments.


In children cough is a common symptom which is commonly caused by a cold. Usually a cough gets better on its own and is not serious. If your child is feeding, drinking, eating and breathing normally and there’s no wheezing, a cough isn’t usually anything to worry about.

If your child has a bad cough that won’t go away, see your doctor. Causes of a more serious cough in children can include:

Signs of a more serious cause of a childhood cough can include:

  • high temperature
  • persistent (longer than 2 weeks) or an unusual cough
  • difficulty breathing
  • the child is listless, overly tired or in discomfort
  • your child’s skin changes colour and turns blue or very pale
  • they are not drinking fluids or passing urine

See the doctor if your child has any of these symptoms. If your child seems to be having trouble breathing, seek medical attention urgently or call an ambulance, even if it’s the middle of the night.

Although it’s upsetting to hear your child cough, coughing helps clear away phlegm from the chest or mucus from the back of the throat.

Sore throats

The most common cause of a sore throat is a viral illness, such as a cold, the flu or COVID-19. Your child’s throat may be dry and sore for a day or 2 before a cold starts. Infant or child dosage paracetamol or ibuprofen can be given to reduce the pain.

Most sore throats clear up on their own after a few days. See the doctor if your child has trouble breathing or swallowing, is drooling more than usual, has a stiff or swollen neck or has a fever.


It is normal for a preschool child to have at least 6 or more colds a year. This is because there are hundreds of different cold viruses and young children have no immunity to any of them as they’ve never had them before. Gradually they build up immunity and get fewer colds.

Antibiotics don’t help with colds as they are a viral illness. Most colds get better in 5 to 7 days. Here are some suggestions on how to ease the symptoms in your child:

  • Increase the amount of fluid your child normally drinks.
  • Saline nose drops can help loosen dried nasal secretions and relieve a stuffy nose. Ask your pharmacist, doctor or early childhood nurse about them.
  • If your child has a fever, pain or discomfort, paracetamol or ibuprofen can help. There are child and infant products that will state on the packet how much you should give children of different ages.
  • Encourage the whole family to wash their hands regularly to stop the cold spreading.
  • Avoid nasal decongestants. They don’t help with a cold and can causes side effects like fast heart rate, jitteriness and insomnia.

Ear infections

Ear infections are common in babies and small children. They often follow a cold and sometimes cause a temperature. A child may pull or rub at an ear, but babies can’t always tell where pain is coming from and may just cry and seem uncomfortable.

If your child has an earache and is distressed but otherwise well, give them infant or child dose paracetamol or ibuprofen. Don’t put any oil, eardrops or cotton buds into your child’s ear unless your doctor advises you to do so. Most ear infections are caused by viruses, which can’t be treated with antibiotics. They will just get better by themselves.

If your child is young or very unwell, your GP may prescribe a short course of antibiotics if there is a risk of bacterial infection.

If you think your child may have an ear infection, take them to see the GP.

Glue ear

Repeated middle ear infections (otitis media) may lead to ‘glue ear’ (otitis media with effusion), where sticky fluid builds up and can affect your child’s hearing. This may lead to unclear speech or behavioural problems.

Your doctor will give you advice on treating glue ear.

ASK YOUR DOCTOR — Preparing for an appointment? Use the Question Builder for general tips on what to ask your GP or specialist.

Ear infections: What to do and what to know

Winter is almost here, and so is cold and flu season, which means ear infections.

An ear infection is the result of bacteria growing in the fluid in the of the middle ear. An ear infection is common to get after having a cold. Ear infections are most often seen in children due to the small anatomy of their eustachian tubes.

They are prevalent in the first years of life, and although they can happen at any time, a parent should be more alert of them during the fall or winter when respiratory infections are on the rise.

Symptoms of an ear infection

When your child has an ear infection, it will typically start with a cold. They will most likely have a cough, congestion and a runny nose. A common indication of an ear infection is when your child gets a fever after the cold symptoms appear. If the fever lasts for more than 48 hours, then it’s time to get your child’s ears looked at, said Shannon Carruthers, M.D., a pediatrician at Sanford Children’s in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

With an ear infection, pain in the ear can be intense. Older children will be able to verbalize this, but obviously babies cannot. Excessive crying might mean that your baby is experiencing pain and it is time to bring them in.

Some other common symptoms your child may display are fussiness and crying, poor feeding and trouble sleeping. The pain is usually worse at night, and lying down can make it worse.

In the meantime, before your doctor visit, you can administer Motrin/Tylenol to relieve the pain, Dr. Carruthers said.

Related: Use this checklist to help diagnose the problem

Treatment and prevention

The doctor will treat your child’s ear infections according to their age and the severity of the condition.

If your child is under 6 months of age, an antibiotic will treat them. If the child is over 6 months, the ear infection will more than likely resolve on its own. The doctor can give something to control the pain until the fluid clears the ear. At home, you can use nasal spray to suction drainage from the nose and keep administrating Motrin/Tylenol as often as the doctor recommends.

You prevent an ear infection the same way you prevent a cold. Good hand washing and proper hygiene are essential. Living in a smoke-free house, being free of second-hand smoke and getting all vaccinations are also good ways to prevent ear infections.

Ear tubes

Some children prone to ear infections may benefit from the insertion of tubes in their ears that drain fluid out of the middle ear, reducing the risk of ear infection. They are small, most often plastic or metal and surgically implanted in the eardrum by an ear, nose and throat surgeon.

Children having prolonged or recurrent fluid-related problems like hearing or balance issues, ear pain or infection are the most likely candidates for ear tubes. Most often these children are between the ages of 1 and 3 years old. Ear tubes don’t affect speech development. They can improve hearing along with ear infection-related problems in behavior, sleep or communication.

Surgery is normally quick and simple, taking place in 15 minutes under general anesthesia on an outpatient basis with patients returning home the same day. Surgeons open a small hole in the eardrum to drain the fluid and relieve pressure from the middle ear. They then place the small tube in the eardrum opening to allow airflow into the middle ear and keep fluid from building up.

Follow-up care is required to monitor the tubes, but the tubes normally fall out on their own six to 12 months after surgery.

Though tubes do provide tangible benefits, there are small associated risks that should be considered. In some cases, they leave a small hole in the eardrum after coming out, which requires a surgical repair. Some children still develop ear infections after they are placed.

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Is it a Cold or an Ear infection?

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  • Allergies versus Viruses in Children – September 27, 2014
  • “Dog Dust” Protects Children from Allergies – September 27, 2014
  • Nasal Saline Irrigation – August 8, 2014
  • Doctor, I am Allergic to Dust. What Can I do? – July 31, 2014
  • Infants Exposed to Dust Mites Less Likely to Develop Allergies – June 23, 2014
  • How to Treat a Young Child’s Cough – December 17, 2013
  • Many Parents are Unaware That Their Children Are at Risk for Noise Induced Hearing Loss – December 9, 2013
  • Is it a Cold or an Ear Infection? – December 9, 2013

View All Posts



My child is diagnosed with an ear infection every time that I bring her to the pediatrician for a cough or cold. This has happened repeatedly and each time I never noticed any of the typical symptoms of an ear infection? Is it possible that my child has an ear infection every time she gets sick?


Children are frequently brought to the doctor for evaluation of fever, sore throat, runny nose or cough. Most of the time, these symptoms are due to viral infections, which are very common among children who attend daycare or school. When a child has these symptoms, an ear infection diagnosis is often puzzling to parents.  Does the ear infection cause the sore throat and runny nose or vice versa?

There is a tube located in the back of the nose, called the Eustachian tube, which essentially connects the nose and the ears.  The Eustachian tube is responsible for equalizing the pressure in the middle ear. Most people are aware of this on airplane flights, when their “ears pop.” This is the Eustachian tube opening up to allow air to travel between the nose and the ears, equalizing pressure so that there is no injury to the ear’s delicate internal structures.

When a child gets a “cold” or an upper respiratory infection, it means the nose and throat have been infected by a virus. The illness usually starts with a sore throat followed by congestion and a runny nose.  When the nose is infected with a virus, the Eustachian tube becomes inflamed, preventing it from working properly.  Dysfunction of the Eustachian tube can lead to negative pressure and fluid build up within the middle ear. This fluid can then become infected with bacteria, causing an ear infection. Ear infections are often treated with antibiotics to prevent complications from the spread of the infection.

In most cases of ear infections due to colds, the fluid in the middle ear resolves on its own.  In some cases, the fluid persists, which can eventually cause hearing loss. Unfortunately this pattern commonly recurs with each episode of an upper respiratory infection, causing prolonged periods of hearing loss that may affect speech development. If your child is having recurrent ear infections or persistent ear fluid it is important to have them evaluated by a qualified pediatric otolaryngologist.

Key Points:

  • Children are frequently brought in to the doctor’s office for evaluation of cold symptoms. Parents are frequently surprised to find that their child also has an ear infection.
  • The nasal cavity and ears are connected by a structure called the Eustachian tube.
  • The Eustachian tube is responsible for pressure equalization of the middle ear and serves to drain any fluid that may accumulate in this space.
  • When children have an upper respiratory infection, such as a cold virus, their Eustachian tube frequently becomes inflamed and no longer functions correctly.
  • Eustachian tube dysfunction frequently leads to fluid and bacterial accumulation within the middle ear.
  • Middle ear infections are frequently treated with antibiotics to prevent complications.
  • Persistent fluid in the middle ear can eventually lead to hearing loss in children.
  • A pediatric otolaryngologist (Pediatric ENT) is best suited to evaluate any suspicion of recurrent ear infections or peristent fluid in the middle ear.

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Why adults (still) get ear infections

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Why adults (still) get ear infections

Ear infections are often considered a childhood disease. It almost seems a rite of passage for children to experience repeat ear infections. Then, around the beginning of their teenage years, it often stops entirely. By the time a person hits adulthood, it is quite common to be decades of years removed from the last time he or she experienced an ear infection. It almost seems as though it is impossible for adults to get an ear infection, right? Unfortunately, although not as common in adults as it is in children, it is still possible for adults to suffer an ear infection. In fact, around 20% of ear infections occur in adults. This begs the question, why can adults still get them?

How Adults Get an Ear Infection
Adult ear infections are just like the ear infections a person would have gotten when he or she was a child. Most middle ear infections are caused by either bacteria or viruses. A common cold, the flu, or allergy symptoms that cause congestion and swelling of the nasal passages, throat, and eustachian tubes can sometimes lead to an infection. Anything that makes the nose stuffy has a tendency to cause swelling and blockage of the eustachian tubes. Swelling from colds or allergies can keep the eustachian tubes from opening and this leads to pressure changes and the accumulation of fluid in the middle ear. This pressure and fluid will cause pain and sometimes persistent fluid can lead to an infection.

Adult Ear Infection Risk Factors
Typically, for an adult ear infection, people with a weakened immune system or inflammation in the structures of the ear are more at risk. Adults with diabetes and/or chronic skin conditions (like eczema or psoriasis) also may be more prone to adult ear infections than most.

When to See a Healthcare Provider
One of the hardest questions to answer when it comes to ear infections is if/when to see a doctor. Often, the symptoms of ear infections can go away on their own without the need for antibiotics or a doctor visit. A good warning to remember is if the symptoms of an ear infection have not improved or completely gone away within three days, if there are new symptoms (e.g. fever, loss of balance, etc.), or if there is discharge coming from the ear, then a trip to the doctor’s office should take place. After a doctor has made his or her diagnosis, then treatment can begin, whether with antibiotics or simple pain management.

Ear Infection Prevention
With all infections, there are ways of preventing adult ear infections from happening. Quitting smoking is a massively important step in preventing adult ear infections. Smoking damages the lungs and the respiratory system. It damages the delicate tissues and affects the immune system’s ability to combat respiratory infections, as well as causing inflammation. By cutting out this harmful habit, a person’s body is better equipped to fight infection and prevent an adult ear infection from happening in the first place. In addition to quitting smoking, some basic hygiene tips can also help. Properly cleaning the outer ear after swimming or bathing helps avoid water sitting in the ear, which can lead to outer ear infections. When drying or cleaning the ear, try to avoid using cotton swabs, as use increases your risk of accidentally damaging your eardrum. Finally, regularly washing hands and avoiding allergy triggers as much as possible are good hygiene tips for the ear. Lastly, eating a well-balanced diet is helpful to your whole body, even your ears.

Ear infections are no fun when you’re a kid, and they are no better as an adult. While not as common as childhood ear infections, adult ear infections have a lot of the same symptoms with the potential for more serious consequences if it is allowed to go unchecked for too long. Basic ear hygiene and healthy lifestyle choices are good ways to avoid the infections but may not always be perfect. It’s always good practice to pay attention to your body and not ignore new aches and pains. Just because you are an adult, does not mean you cannot get an ear infection.

Common Cold Linked To Ear Infections, Researchers Confirm — ScienceDaily

A new five-year study at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston confirms the suspected close link between the two most common diseases of young children: colds and ear infections.

The study, which appears in the March 15 issue of Clinical Infectious Disease, confirmed the suspected close link between the two most common diseases of young children, viral colds and ear infections. It also identified the viruses associated with higher rates of ear infections.

“Understanding how viruses and ear infections are linked will definitely help us find new ways to prevent ear infections,” said Dr. Tasnee Chronmaitree, a pediatric infectious disease specialist who is the study’s principal investigator. “To break the link you must first understand it.”

Ear infections are the driving force behind antibiotic resistance, a troubling medical issue, as physicians often administer antibiotics for the painful, persistent ailment.

Chonmaitree has studied otitis media (ear infection) for more than two decades. She said parents could best protect their children by avoiding exposure to sick children and to have their children vaccinated against influenza. She suggested that children in day care might face reduced exposure to viruses if they are enrolled in smaller day care facilities with fewer children.

Funded by the National Institutes of Health, Chonmaitree and colleagues followed 294 children ages 6 months to 3 years for up to one year each. Researchers documented about 1,300 cold episodes and a 61 percent rate of ear infection complication including asymptomatic fluid in the middle ear, which can cause hearing problems. Researchers also identified the types of cold viruses — adenovirus, respiratory syncytial virus and coronavirus — that most often resulted in ear infection.

“Because we now know that the common cold is the precursor to an ear infection, it is important for parents to make extra efforts to prevent their children from catching colds,” Chonmaitree said. “It’s important to avoid exposure to sick children or adults, to avoid day care attendance, if possible, and if that’s not an option, to choose a smaller group day care.”

Chonmaitree also recommended the use of influenza vaccine, the only vaccine available to prevent respiratory viral infection, which is now available for children older than 6 months. The antiviral drug has also been shown to prevent ear infections associated with influenza, she said.

Chonmaitree and colleagues will continue to study the role of viruses in ear infection aiming to find a way to prevent the disease. Continued funding from the NIH will allow them to study children born with genetic variations who are prone to having ear infections and at the interactions between genes and the environment.

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Materials provided by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

90,000 Otitis. How can you avoid it? Advice for parents

Otitis. How can you avoid it?

In the cold season, children are much more likely to suffer from acute respiratory diseases (ARI), which often lead to complications, and, first of all, to otitis media. Tatiana Aksenova, an otorhinolaryngologist at the Children’s Doctor clinic, told us about what kind of disease it is and why it occurs.

Otitis media is an inflammatory process of one of the ear departments.In the vast majority of cases, any discharge from the ear canal, pain in one or both ears and / or hearing loss are due to otitis media. It is otitis media that is one of the most common diseases, especially in children.

Inflammation in the middle ear does not appear out of the blue. Its root cause is a change in pressure in the tympanic cavity. Why can this happen? If we put aside all sorts of rare causes of otitis media, it becomes clear that otitis media is almost always not an independent disease and is almost always a complication of inflammatory diseases of the nasopharynx, primarily acute respiratory viral infections (ARVI).

With any colds in the nasopharynx, there is an increased production of mucus. Repeated sniffing, especially active sniffing (it does not matter, in oneself or from oneself) contribute to the ingress of mucus into the lumen of the Eustachian tube; in addition, viruses and bacteria that cause acute respiratory infections can directly cause inflammation of the mucous membrane of the Eustachian tube. Both of these factors, together or separately, cause a sufficiently long-term violation of the ventilation of the tympanic cavity, and the pressure in it becomes negative.Under these conditions, the cells lining the tympanic cavity begin to secrete inflammatory fluid. Already at this stage, very specific symptoms of otitis media arise – pain in the ear (ears), hearing impairment. Later (sometimes after a few hours, but more often after two or three days) bacteria enter the tympanic cavity (all through the same Eustachian tube) and begin to multiply – otitis media becomes purulent. The pain increases, the body temperature rises, the pressure in the tympanic cavity often increases so much that a rupture of the tympanic membrane occurs and purulent fluid begins to be released through the opening through the ear canal.

Children suffer from otitis media much more often than adults. This is facilitated by the following factors. In young children, the auditory tube is wide and short, which greatly facilitates the path of the microbe. In addition, babies in the first year of life are predominantly in a horizontal position, which makes it difficult for mucus to drain out and contributes to its stagnation in the nasopharynx. In infants, otitis media can be caused by the ingestion of formula or breast milk from the nasopharynx into the middle ear. Well, and besides, children just get sick more often with colds.Children with weakened immunity, premature babies, and babies who are bottle-fed and therefore deprived of maternal antibodies, have an even higher risk of developing otitis media.

Children cry more and actively sniff at the same time. Children often have enlarged adenoids, which can compress the Eustachian tube.

Prevention of otitis media in children is of no small importance

This includes all methods of prevention aimed at increasing the immunity of the child, at preventing the common cold:

  • hardening of a healthy child,
  • gymnastics,
  • vitamin therapy,
  • removal of adenoids and polyps,
  • effective treatment of acute respiratory infections.

An accurate diagnosis of otitis media can only be established by a doctor when examining the tympanic membrane (such an examination in medical language is called otoscopy). Otoscopy makes it possible to determine the type of otitis media, to answer the question of what it is.

The sequence of actions of parents at the first signs of otitis media or if it is suspected – an immediate consultation with an otolaryngologist.

Inflammation of the ear: causes, prevention and treatment

Ears are one of our main ways of obtaining information about the world around us, one of the most complex and vulnerable “mechanisms”.Due to their structure, they are susceptible to a variety of diseases, some of which can cause severe discomfort, lead to hearing loss, and even affect parts of the brain. The onset of symptoms is most often associated with the onset of inflammation of the ear (external or internal). This disease – otitis media – is one of the most common. In this article, we will tell you about why ear inflammation occurs, what symptoms you should pay attention to, and how the treatment is carried out.


Types of otitis media

Classification is carried out according to various methods, the main of which is the location of the focus of inflammation.As you know, the ear is a complex organ that consists of the outer, middle and inner ear. The focus of inflammation can occur in any area. If the process began in the outer ear, then otitis media is classified as external, if on average – as middle, if in the internal – as internal. These diseases proceed in different ways and require specific treatment.

Otitis externa can occur in a limited or diffuse form.

  • in the first case, boils are usually formed.Their appearance is characterized by sharp painful sensations, which intensify when pressing on the auricle or its tragus. The disease is also accompanied by general weakness and fever. Usually, boils are formed due to infection in the ear, but they can also be caused by pathological conditions of the body, such as diabetes mellitus;
  • in the second case, the process begins when a fungal infection enters the ear. In this case, the disease is characterized by purulent discharge from the ear and itching in the ear canal.This disease is called otomycosis. Without proper treatment, it can spread to the other ear.

Otitis media – viral, exudative is a complication of acute respiratory viral infections and prolonged rhinitis, in children it occurs with inflammation of the adenoids. This is a more serious disease, as it occurs in hard-to-reach areas of the ear. It usually begins as a result of the rise of infection through the ear canal in diseases of the upper respiratory tract. The second reason is damage or rupture of the eardrum.Occurs when injured or sharp objects fall into the ear. The third reason is the ingress of infection through the blood vessels.

Without appropriate treatment, otitis media can progress.

This can lead to serious consequences, including:

  1. Paralysis of the facial nerve.
  2. Hearing impairment or loss.
  3. The beginning of inflammation in the inner ear.

Emerging complications often require serious treatment, including surgery.

If the inflammation started in the inner ear, then the disease qualifies as internal otitis media (labyrinthitis). It is fraught with various complications, including meningitis, so if the following symptoms appear, you should immediately consult a doctor:

  1. Constant dizziness, nausea and vomiting.
  2. Disturbances in the functioning of the vestibular apparatus – sudden loss of balance, falls, etc.
  3. Tinnitus, hearing impairment or loss.

The causes of labyrinthitis can be

  • infection from the middle ear or from the skull;
  • 90,021 activities of viruses, such as influenza;

    90,021 head trauma or failed middle ear surgery.

Causes and prevention of otitis media

Let us note right away that these diseases are extremely widespread. More or less serious cases occur with almost every person throughout his life.

Interesting fact:
The number of visits for otitis externa to otolaryngologists noticeably increases in the summer, with the beginning of the swimming season.

Why is this happening? During swimming, water gets into the ears, bacteria in which cause inflammation. This is a common cause of otitis media, but far from the only one. The disease can also develop as a result of:

  • hypothermia;
  • infection in the ear or nose;
  • injury.

Conclusion 1:
You can significantly reduce the likelihood of external ear inflammation if you take good care of it.

To do this, it is enough to follow a number of simple rules:

  • In cold weather, do not neglect wearing hats. Scarves and hats will help prevent hypothermia.
  • In hot weather, try not to spend too much time under the air conditioner. Temperature changes can lead to the development of inflammatory processes.
  • If you work in a constant loud noise environment, be sure to wear protective equipment. Use earplugs or earplugs.
  • Avoid triggering upper respiratory illness. See a doctor and do not try to be treated with “folk” methods.
  • Do not neglect regular examinations by specialists, especially if you have already had otitis media. Often, the disease can be diagnosed and treated before the first symptoms appear.
  • If you suffer from waxy plugs in your ears, never try to clean them yourself with a needle or toothpick. In this case, you can become infected.

These are simple measures that do not require serious efforts, but can significantly reduce the risk of developing diseases.

We draw your attention to the fact that not all causes of otitis media depend on human activity. This is especially true when it comes to otitis media and otitis media.For the prevention of these diseases, regularly undergo examinations with a doctor.

What to do if the ear is inflamed?

The practice of our specialists allows us to draw a disappointing conclusion:

Many patients deliberately avoid going to an otolaryngologist even after the onset of the characteristic symptoms of ear inflammation.

They usually make one of two fundamental mistakes:

  1. Try to ignore discomfort until it becomes too severe.
  2. They are trying to heal themselves, guided by the advice of friends, acquaintances or random people from the Internet.

Both those and others eventually turn to a specialist after the otitis media has begun to progress. Treatment at this stage is less effective, and recovery may take a long time. In addition, otitis media can cause complications that can lead to serious consequences, including complete hearing loss.

In order to prevent this from happening, it is important to consult a doctor in a timely manner.You should make an appointment with a specialist in the following cases:

  1. Acute pain in one or both ears that gets worse during the day and becomes especially noticeable in the evening.
  2. With an increase in body temperature.
  3. With the appearance of weakness and lack of appetite.
  4. For purulent discharge from the ear.
  5. Severe hearing loss.
  6. With redness and swelling of the external auditory meatus.

The doctor will conduct an examination that will allow you to detect the inflammation focus, regardless of how deep it is located. After that, appropriate treatment will be prescribed.

Conclusion 2:
If you have an inflamed ear or other symptoms of otitis media, you should see a doctor immediately. To do this, contact the specialists of our medical center.

How and how to treat ear inflammation?

Otitis media is one of the diseases that the immune system of a healthy person is not able to cope with without assistance.In mild cases, ear inflammation involves conservative treatment: taking pain relievers and antihistamines. If they are not enough, antibiotics are prescribed.

Treatment is also complemented by the removal of foreign bodies and pus from the auditory tube, disinfection of wounds, application of compresses and various measures to strengthen the immune system. If the patient is diagnosed with otitis media with effusion, then drugs can be injected directly into the cavity behind the tympanic membrane. In some cases, this requires shunting.It is also important to note that the treatment of otitis media necessarily involves the treatment of all concomitant diseases (rhinitis, ARVI, and so on).

If conservative treatment fails, surgery may be required. In this case, the ENT specialist performs a paracentesis of the tympanic membrane.

Conclusion 3:
Remember that the necessary treatment must be prescribed by the doctor. Using inappropriate methods can lead to incomplete recovery or worsen the course of the disease.

If you need an otolaryngologist consultation or qualified medical assistance, please contact our medical center.


otorhinolaryngologist (ENT)

Candidate of Medical Sciences

Experience 39 years

+7 (495) 032-15-21

90,000 Ear diseases in children – we treat them at the MedMix Plus medical center in Penza

-Hello.My daughter is 2 years old. Often we have colds, a severe runny nose, then the ears get sick with acute pain. Why is there a complication in the ears? Is it possible to undergo medical treatment at home?

The doctor of the medical center “MedMix Plus”, otorhinolaryngologist of the highest category, Vladimir Alekseevich Martynovsky, answers.

At the first suspicion of ear disease (in case of anxiety, altered condition of the child), you should consult a specialist at the medical center or call a doctor at home. Only with timely and correct treatment is it possible to save a child from suffering without any unpleasant consequences. You should not get carried away with self-medication, the appointment of drug therapy should be made by an ENT doctor after examination and examination.

The reason why children often have ear diseases is the peculiarity of the structure of their Eustachian tube. The Eustachian tube connects the throat and middle ear and serves to equalize pressure from both sides on the eardrum, it also protects the middle ear by opening and closing as needed and removing unwanted fluid and germs from it.In children, it is short, wide and located approximately at the same level as the pharynx, so it cannot open and close effectively and this allows germs and secretions to easily enter the ear from the nasopharynx.

Two common ear diseases are most common in children. Acute otitis media (CCA). This disease often occurs against the background of acute respiratory viral infections (as its complication) in children with weakened immunity, premature babies, and also in babies who are bottle-fed.In most cases, the infection enters the middle ear from the inflamed nasopharynx through the auditory tube. It is accompanied by symptoms such as pain, fever, tinnitus, manifestations of inflammation of the middle ear (located behind the eardrum) with discharge (fluid). The baby becomes lethargic, he may vomit. In infants, otitis media is manifested by restless sleep, loss of appetite and crying. The CCA can very quickly turn into a purulent one, which is characterized by suppuration from the ear, which indicates a ruptured eardrum and is an indication for urgent medical attention.

Exudative otitis media (EMI) is an accumulation of fluid in the middle ear without signs of infection. The Eustachian tubes carry fluid from the ears to the throat. When these tubes become swollen or blocked, fluid (exudate) can build up in the ear. It gradually fills the tympanic cavity and the auditory tube. Its consistency is distinguished by its viscosity and density. It blocks the function of the ear. Patients may complain of hearing loss as well as fullness and tinnitus. If treatment is not timely, the disease can go into a chronic stage, complications arise.

Risk factors for CCA and ESP:

– exposure to tobacco smoke

– respiratory infections

– allergies

– overcooling

– adenoids

– drinking lying on the back

– weak immune system of the child

Avoiding these risk factors can prevent these problems.


Anamnesis plays an important role in diagnosis. It is necessary to find out, after which there was a deterioration in the condition of the child.Most often, ear disease is preceded by acute rhinitis, acute respiratory viral infections, sometimes trauma (falling from the bed), allergic diseases.

Acute otitis media and exudative otitis media require a physical examination by a doctor who can look inside the ear and see fluid or inflammation. An examination of the ear is carried out using an otoscope or an ear mirror, changes in the external auditory canal and the condition of the eardrum are assessed. The sinuses of the nose and mouth are also examined.

If otitis media is suspected, a general blood test is prescribed to assess the presence of an inflammatory process in the body and its severity (increased ESR, an increase in the number of leukocytes).

If a child’s otitis media lasts longer than 3 months, or if there is a suspicion of hearing, speech or learning problems, a hearing test should be done. Audiometry can be done to check for hearing impairment.

If purulent fluid flows out of the external auditory canal, then it is taken for bacteriological examination and analysis of sensitivity to antibiotics.In especially difficult situations (for example, with damage to the inner ear), X-ray examination, CT and MRI are additionally used.

In the medical center “MedMix Plus” for the treatment of CCA and ESO, ear blowing is used according to Politzer, catheterization of the auditory tube with the introduction of medicinal substances, it is possible to carry out a toilet of the ear canal using an aspirator and an irrigator (including removal of sulfur plugs), smear for bacteriological examination.

We are waiting for you at the addresses:

Penza, Noviy Kavkaz str., 8, registration by phone: (8412) 204-003.
Penza st. Ternovsky 214, registration by phone: (8412) 205-003.

90,000 Lays ears for colds causes and treatment

Published: October 20, 2018

Everyone who has at least once encountered a respiratory disease knows how unpleasant it is. The nose does not breathe, the throat hurts, the temperature rises – in this state it is impossible not only to work, but even to rest.However, these are not all signs of a cold. In some cases, the insidious infection is accompanied by congestion in the ears. In such a situation, the above symptoms are accompanied by a hum and noise in the head, intense pain in the temples, discomfort when chewing and swallowing. What is the reason for this? What measures to take if the ears are heavily stuffed up with a cold? How to relieve your health in a short time? Let us dwell on these issues in more detail.

Contents of article

Causes of ear congestion

Why can ears clog during illness? Because the ENT organs are located close to each other.The middle ear is connected to the nasopharynx by the Eustachian tube. The deterioration of its patency results from:

  • inflammation of the inner lining of the nose,
  • mucosal edema,
  • 90,021 infection in the ear canal.

It happens that pathogenic agents enter the Eustachian tube due to improper rinsing of the nose. This leads to the development of tubo-otitis, one of the most common complications of acute respiratory viral infections. If you do not start treatment in time, the disease can develop into otitis media.It is dangerous for its consequences: meningitis, sepsis, brain abscess. Therefore, if the ear is heavily blocked with a cold, then you need to immediately seek help from a specialist.

Medical assistance

A visit to the doctor is the only right decision. At the appointment, the doctor will listen to complaints, determine the underlying disease that provoked ear congestion, and draw up a therapy plan. Treatment of tubo-otitis is aimed at restoring the patency of the Eustachian tube. To do this, it is necessary to eliminate the cause of the violation – a respiratory disease.To fight a viral infection, doctors often prescribe Derinat. The drug is suitable for both treatment and prevention of ARVI in adults and children from birth. Available in the form of nasal drops and spray. The main advantages are triple action:

  • antiviral – helps to fight the causative agents of the disease – viruses;
  • immunomodulatory – enhances the body’s natural defenses;
  • reparative – restores and strengthens the nasopharyngeal mucosa, thereby minimizing the risk of complications and secondary bacterial infection.

Derinat is sold in pharmacies. You can study the instructions on the website in the appropriate section. Consult your doctor before use. For ear congestion, a specialist may also prescribe drops to eliminate swelling and relieve pain.

What can you do at home?

In agreement with the doctor, it is possible to supplement drug therapy with time-tested means. They will help reduce swelling of the nasopharynx, remove mucus from the nasal passages and relieve ear congestion.The following procedures will help to improve your well-being.

  • Washes. Prepare saline solution. This will require a large glass of warm boiled water and a teaspoon of salt. Washing can be carried out using a special bowl, a rubber bulb or a syringe without a needle. Tilt your head to one side, insert the tip of the device into your upper nostril, and inject some solution. It should flow from the lower nostril.
  • Inhalation. Heat mineral water or boil water with two tablespoons of baking soda.Breathe over the steam for 10 minutes. It shouldn’t be scalding. Massaging the sinuses and wings of the nose will also help to improve the flow of mucus.

In order to prevent ear congestion, you should see a doctor at the first sign of a cold. If the respiratory infection is cured in time, the unpleasant condition can be avoided. Be healthy!

Derinat products

Useful articles:

90,000 From otitis media to hearing loss. Lore – about why you should not run a cold | HEALTH: Medicine | HEALTH

Most of us take a cold lightly, but in vain.It can become chronic or cause serious complications.

Sergei Abramov, chief otorhinolaryngologist of the Tver region, told how not to bring oneself to the extreme.

Insidious complications

Elena Tikhonova, AiF Tver: Sergei Alexandrovich, people often suffer colds on their feet, do not go to the doctors in time. What is the threat?

Sergey Abramov: First of all, sinusitis and otitis media.About 7% of the population of the Tver region suffer from various forms of sinusitis every year. At the same time, against the background of difficulty in nasal breathing, pain in the face area, nasal discharge of a mucous or purulent nature may appear, and the sense of smell is impaired. The insidiousness of the disease is that you may not immediately pay attention to the first manifestations of inflammation of the paranasal sinuses. The consequences can be quite dangerous. The most common complications of sinusitis are reactive edema of the eyelids, phlegmon of the orbit of the eye; and the most serious – intracranial purulent complications.In these cases, urgent surgical intervention is required.

A runny nose can also lead to otitis media, since the middle ear is connected to the nasopharynx by the auditory tube. Otitis media begins with shooting pains and a feeling of ear congestion, hearing impairment, and fever. It is necessary to consult a specialist in a timely manner: if you carefully follow the doctor’s recommendations, the disease goes away without consequences. On the contrary, without proper treatment, complications often occur. The process turns into a chronic stage, scars form in the tympanic cavity, which leads to persistent hearing loss.In severe cases, infection from the middle ear cavity can spread to the lining of the brain and then to the medulla, causing meningitis, brain abscess, thrombosis of the venous sinuses of the cranial cavity. These are extremely serious diseases that, even with surgical treatment, do not always end successfully.

– If a person needs an operation, where in the Tver region can it be done?

– ENT operations are performed in four central regional hospitals – Vyshnevolotskaya, Rzhevskaya, Bezhetskaya and Nelidovskaya.In Tver, they are carried out in the Uspensky City Hospital No. 1 on Bebel Street and the City Children’s Hospital No. 1 on Rybatskaya Street. Residents of other municipalities are referred to the regional clinical hospital. Today, in the Upper Volga region, various types of specialized ENT care are provided, including endoscopic operations. But there is not enough capacity. Sometimes we refer patients to the scientific and clinical center of otorhinolaryngology in Moscow, where they can receive high-tech treatment for free – under a compulsory health insurance policy or a quota.

What’s hot?

– Many people use heat instead of medication for pain in the ears or nasal congestion. Is it possible to do home warming up?

– In acute inflammation, they are undesirable. With sinusitis, due to edema of the nasal mucosa, the sinuses of the sinuses often overlap with the nasal cavity and the outflow of purulent discharge from the sinuses is disturbed. When the area of ​​the nose and sinuses is exposed to heat (a hot egg or heated salt), due to the expansion of the capillaries, blood flow increases, which further increases the edema and increases the pressure in the diseased sinus.The pain intensifies, the process can go beyond the sinus.

At the initial manifestations of otitis media, you can apply a warming compress without touching the auricle (no more than two hours), or a woolen scarf bandage. With ongoing pain, purulent discharge from the ear, an increase in temperature, it is necessary to urgently consult an otorhinolaryngologist.

– What about vasoconstrictor drugs? So good: I dripped and my nose breathes again …

– When treating a cold, their use is advisable.They eliminate mucosal edema and help restore normal communication between the nasal cavity and the paranasal sinuses, as well as with the middle ear. But they cannot be used for more than a week: this can lead to addiction and dependence on drugs. With prolonged use, drug-dependent vasomotor rhinitis develops. Children under the age of two can only use drops (aerosols can cause laryngospasm). The drugs must be age appropriate. Adults are better off using sprays.

It is also necessary to help the nasal mucosa to get rid of the viscous secretions in which viruses and bacteria are present. To do this, you need to irrigate or rinse the nose with isotonic or slightly hypertonic saline. Now the choice of preparations based on seawater is very large. The only “but”: small children need to do this procedure very carefully, because the liquid can get through the auditory tube into the middle ear, causing otitis media. If the situation does not improve within five days, a specialist consultation is necessary.

– Is it necessary to go to the ENT in case of severe runny nose or ear pain? Or can a therapist help too?

– General practitioners also know the basics of ENT endoscopic examination. Therapists can prescribe a preliminary examination and treatment. However, if the manifestations of the disease do not go away within 3-4 days, but progress, you need to contact an otolaryngologist. A referral from a therapist for acute otitis media or sinusitis is not required.

What diseases of ENT organs are most common among residents of the Tver region?

  • Diseases of the ear and mastoid process – 52 478;
  • acute laryngitis and tracheitis – 35 172;
  • diseases of the tonsils and adenoids – 13 847;
  • 90,021 acute otitis media – 12 103.

Data on the number of cases in 2017 are given.

Risk factors for ENT diseases

  • weakened immunity;
  • the presence of adenoids;
  • anomalies in the structure of ENT organs;
  • bad habits;
  • deviated nasal septum;
  • 90,021 work in hazardous production;

  • dental problems.

See also:

90,000 Acute upper respiratory tract infection


29 175

20 minutes


Acute infections of the upper respiratory tract include inflammatory processes of the nasal cavity, nasopharynx, pharynx and larynx (above the vocal cords) caused by various microorganisms. All of them have similar symptoms (despite the variety of pathogens), therefore, in everyday life they are often called “colds”, and doctors use the general term “acute respiratory diseases” or ARI to refer to them.

ARI are observed year-round. On average, adults catch colds 2 to 4 times a year, children get sick more often, 6-9 times – this is normal and necessary for the formation of healthy immunity 2 . The peak incidence of acute respiratory tract infections occurs in the autumn-winter-spring period 1 . The likelihood of colds increases with the first cold snap, in September-October 1 , when we begin to go out less often and contact other people for longer, among whom there may be carriers of pathogenic microbes or patients with acute respiratory infections.High humidity, cold outside often cause hypothermia and decreased immunity. Low air humidity in heated rooms leads to drying out of the nasal mucosa, increases its permeability and susceptibility to infectious agents. Only in May, when the weather improves, the incidence decreases 1 .

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Causes of upper respiratory tract diseases

Despite the similarity of manifestations, acute respiratory infections differ in the nature of their origin.They can be caused by different pathogens.

1. Viruses

They are the culprit of the “cold” in the vast majority of cases 3 and then it is called ARVI (acute respiratory viral infection). About 40% of all such infections are associated with rhinoviruses 1 , which mainly affect the mucous membrane of the nose, nasopharynx and pharynx. They are followed by human coronaviruses, which cause rhinopharyngitis, and parainfluenza viruses, which are responsible, among other things, for the development of laryngitis, an inflammation of the larynx 1 .Adenoviruses, respiratory syncytial viruses are less common, like other almost 200 types of viruses – causative agents of respiratory tract infections 4 .

In about 1-2% of cases, viruses “can promote the activation of bacterial microflora”: they penetrate into the cells of the mucous membrane, cause their death, disrupt the functioning of the ciliated epithelium and the mechanisms of cleansing the respiratory tract, reduce local immunity and thereby create favorable conditions for the development of bacteria … In this case, the inflammation becomes viral-bacterial 4 .

2. Bacteria

Sometimes acute respiratory infections are initially bacterial in nature. As infectious agents are usually streptococci, pneumococci, haemophilus influenzae, moraxella 2 . Bacterial infections of the upper respiratory tract more often “cling” to young children with undeveloped immunity, the elderly, whose body is weakened by health problems, to patients with primary and secondary immunodeficiency.

3. Atypical pathogens of acute respiratory infections

This group includes chlamydia, mycoplasma, pneumocystis, legionella and other microorganisms.Respiratory diseases caused by them are rare, so we will not dwell on them.

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How the infection and development of ARI occurs

The source of infection is always people with ARVI who pose the maximum danger to others on the 3-4th day of illness, when the release of viruses into the environment is especially intense 5 .

The main routes of transmission of respiratory tract infections are airborne and contact 4 .

  • Airborne

Viruses and pathogenic bacteria are found in the saliva and sputum of the patient. When coughing and sneezing, droplets of nasal mucus and phlegm quickly spread in the environment and, together with the air, enter the respiratory system of a healthy person. In confined spaces and public transport, the infection spreads especially quickly, therefore, restricting visits to public places significantly reduces the likelihood of catching ARVI 4 .

The mucus released when the patient sneezes and blows his nose falls on his hands, surrounding household items. Viruses settle on dishes, the patient’s desk, doorknobs, handrails of public transport, books, furniture used by an infected person. From these objects, pathogens enter the hands of healthy people, and then, when touched to the face, are carried into the nose and mouth. It has been proven that the contact route of transmission of viruses is superior in importance to the airborne 5 .Therefore, frequent hand washing can be called one of the main ways to prevent respiratory tract infections 5 .

How does the disease develop? Getting on the mucous membrane of the nasal cavity, viruses are introduced into its cells and begin to multiply vigorously. Their number reaches a critical level within 1-3 days (incubation period), after which the first symptoms of the disease begin to appear. In this list:

  • Rhinitis is an inflammation of the nasal mucosa.
  • Pharyngitis – inflammation of the pharynx, soft palate, uvula and lymphoid tissue of the pharynx.
  • Epiglottitis – inflammation of the upper part of the larynx and epiglottis, which closes the entrance to the trachea during swallowing.
  • Laryngitis – inflammation of the larynx.

Most often, colds are associated with viral rhinopharyngitis – a combined inflammation of the mucous membrane of the nasal cavity and pharynx. If the disease is mild and does not lead to complications, doctors usually write in the patient’s card “ARVI” or “acute upper respiratory tract infection”, without specifying the localization of the inflammatory process 2.3 .

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Symptoms of acute respiratory infections

The clinical picture of all colds consists of the same general and local manifestations in varying degrees of severity and combinations.

General symptoms

Their severity depends on the type of pathogen and can vary from mild malaise to severe intoxication, accompanied by disruption of the internal organs and clouding of consciousness.


It is especially pronounced in young children, in whom symptoms of intoxication prevail over local manifestations of the common cold 5 .

Fever may be absent in case of mild illness, as well as in debilitated patients and the elderly 1 .

Aches and pains in muscles and joints

In some patients, these sensations are limited to the appearance of a feeling of weakness, in others the body aches are so strong that it does not allow to fall asleep and forces them to take pain relievers.


It is more typical of influenza, but it can also appear in other viral diseases, especially with their severe course 1 and the temperature rises to 40 0 C and above.In these cases, the headache may be accompanied by nausea and unresponsive vomiting associated with irritation of the meninges 1 .

Gastrointestinal discomfort

Decreased appetite, nausea and vomiting, intestinal colic and diarrhea, as manifestations of a viral upper respiratory tract infection, are more common in children 5 . Sometimes they accompany streptococcal lesions 5 .

Local manifestations of ARI

Their diversity is determined by the level of respiratory tract damage.

Runny nose

It begins with itching, burning, nasal congestion, sneezing and profuse mucous discharge from the nasal passages. As the process develops and the bacterial microflora joins, nasal mucus acquires a yellowish-greenish tint, it becomes less, and it begins to dry out, forming crusts in the nose. This reduces nasal congestion.

Sore throat and sore throat

They are associated with inflammation and dryness of the pharyngeal mucosa, increase during swallowing and slightly decrease after warm drinking.The mucous membrane of the pharynx, palatine arches, uvula and tonsils look red, edematous. Enlarged lymphoid follicles are visible on the back of the pharynx.


One of the reasons for the appearance of cough in acute respiratory infection is the flow of mucus from the nose and nasopharynx into the airways. The second reason is associated with irritation of the receptors of the inflamed pharynx – in this case, the cough appears about 2-3 days of the disease, more often it is dry, harsh, up to vomiting.

A barking cough and hoarseness of the voice on the 4-5th day of illness indicates the involvement of the larynx in the pathological process and the development of laryngitis. Children may develop false croup, in which fits of convulsive coughing are accompanied by difficult noisy breaths, and sometimes even periods of cessation of breathing 5 . The condition worsens at night, which is associated with an increase in mucus production and impaired sputum discharge at this time of day 5 .


In the first days of the disease, the cough is always dry, painful.The appearance of phlegm in the following days relieves the suffering somewhat. With the defeat of the upper respiratory tract, it is not abundant. Its slimy nature speaks of the viral nature of the disease, bacterial infections of the respiratory tract are accompanied by the release of purulent sputum.

Additional symptoms

Along with the general manifestations typical for all diseases of the upper respiratory tract, in some cases specific symptoms are observed.

So, when infected with adenoviruses, signs of conjunctivitis appear, children often have abdominal pain associated with inflammation of the intra-abdominal lymph nodes 5 .

Respiratory syncytial virus tends to infect not only the upper, but also the lower parts of the respiratory tract, quickly causing the development of bronchitis and bronchiolitis 1 .

Bad breath is more often a symptom of a bacterial infection of the respiratory tract. It is associated with the appearance of pus in the oropharynx – a product of inflammation and the vital activity of pathogens.

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Diagnosis of acute respiratory infections is based mainly on clinical symptoms of inflammation of various parts of the respiratory tract and the results of a medical examination. Given the predominantly mild course of the common cold, no further research is required. Virological diagnosis is usually not carried out, the nature of the pathogen remains unspecified – acute respiratory tract infections do not require specific treatment 4.5 .

Bacteriological analysis of throat swabs and rapid tests for beta-hemolytic group A streptococcus make it possible to differentiate banal viral tonsillitis and pharyngitis from dangerous bacterial diseases requiring immediate antibiotic therapy 4.5 .Bacteriological examination is also indicated in the development of complications and the absence of effect from the antibiotics used 4 .

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Potential Complications

Although a cold is usually mild and goes away within 7-10 days, it can cause complications.

Complications associated with the activation of bacterial microflora 1

Acute purulent rhinosinusitis

or inflammation of the nose and paranasal sinuses.This is the most common complication of ARVI. It is possible to suspect its development if the manifestations of a cold do not disappear after 7-10 days, nasal congestion persists, the temperature rises again, heaviness in the head in the area of ​​the sinus and headache appear.

Acute otitis media

or middle ear inflammation. Its development is evidenced by the appearance of shooting pain and a feeling of congestion in the ear.

Acute bronchitis

its bacterial form is accompanied by the release of purulent sputum and more often occurs in people with chronic problems of the respiratory system.


is one of the most dangerous complications of respiratory diseases. It is worth thinking about it if the temperature lasts longer than 10 days, coughing, general weakness and sweating persist.

Bacterial complications of respiratory tract infections require treatment with antibiotics, therefore, if their symptoms appear, you should definitely see a doctor. In the case of a mild course, a cold in adults can be treated independently without resorting to medical help.ARI in children, due to the high risk of complications, requires the consultation of a pediatrician.

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Treatment of upper respiratory tract infections

All methods of treating colds can be divided into non-drug and medication.

Non-drug methods

In most cases, ARI treatment does not imply hospitalization, but adherence to the home regime is always mandatory. Moreover, the first days of illness, while the fever persists, is best spent in bed.This is especially important for children, but adults should not ignore this rule.

  • Hygiene measures

It is necessary to maintain a temperature in the room of about 20 0 C and a humidity of about 50-70%, which is achieved by wet cleaning and frequent ventilation of the room 2 . Heat and dry air “dry” the respiratory tract, intensify coughing and promote bacterial infection. Cold and excessive humidity in the room lead to hypothermia and aggravate the course of acute respiratory infections.

To purify the air from viruses and bacteria, it is recommended to use ionizers, germicidal and ultraviolet lamps 2 . They help reduce the risk of bacterial complications during treatment and also protect family members and guests from respiratory tract infections.

The diet should be chemically and mechanically gentle, aimed at fully meeting the body’s needs for nutrients, vitamins and trace elements. It is better to exclude spices, herbs and smoked meats, limit the intake of salt and sugar, reduce the amount of sour and carbohydrate foods: sweets, flour products, potatoes, legumes and corn.You should not get carried away with raw vegetables and fruits, it is optimal to use them boiled and baked. Meat – mainly minced and in small quantities. Fermented milk products, various fruit drinks, jelly, puddings are useful.

  • Drinking regime

Compliance with the drinking regime is a fundamental principle in the treatment of diseases of the upper respiratory tract 4 . The fever is accompanied by increased sweating. To prevent dehydration, maintain optimal moisture content of the mucous membranes, you need to consume a sufficient amount of liquid (at least 30 ml per 1 kg of body weight per day) 4 .You can drink plain clean water, still mineral water, fruit drinks, sugar-free compotes, cold green or herbal tea. It is advisable to give up coffee, cocoa, carbonated sweet drinks: they irritate the mucous membrane.

  • Rinsing the nose and rinsing the throat

Liquid nasal mucus has a protective function. It prevents the penetration of microbes into the mucous membrane, moisturizes and cleanses it. Nasal lavage aims to remove dried mucus and keep nasal secretions fluid 4 .As solutions for washing, you can use normal saline and special preparations based on seawater.

Gargling helps to cleanse the mucous membrane of the oropharynx, eliminate tickling, burning and sore throat, reduce cough 4 . For rinsing, decoctions and infusions of medicinal herbs with anti-inflammatory effect 4 are suitable.

Medical methods

Methods of drug therapy for ENT diseases, in particular respiratory tract infections, can be divided into general and local.

  • General treatment

It includes etiotropic therapy: antiviral and antibacterial, which means the destruction of pathogens, as well as symptomatic therapy aimed at combating the manifestations of the disease.

  • Antiviral and antibacterial therapy

Antiviral drugs for acute respiratory viral infections are less effective than for influenza 1.5 , therefore, the expediency of their use is questionable.

Systemic antibiotics (taken orally, in the form of injections and infusions) are indicated only in case of proven presence of a bacterial infection, in particular, in the development of bacterial complications such as acute tonsillitis, otitis media, sinusitis 1.5 .

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Symptomatic Treatment

It is aimed at combating the symptoms of the disease – manifestations of a respiratory tract infection, such as fever, nasal congestion, discomfort in the throat and cough.

  1. Antipyretic drugs

For uncomplicated acute respiratory infections in adults, the temperature rarely exceeds 38 0 C. According to WHO recommendations, the treatment of fever with antipyretic drugs in adults should be started only if the fever has reached 38.5 0 C 10 . With diseases of the heart, lungs, nervous system and poor tolerance to high temperatures, you can take medicines earlier.

Children with acute respiratory infections tend to fever more often than adults, but antipyretic drugs should not be abused.

Based on generally accepted rules, the temperature of a child should be brought down 5.10 in the following case:

  • if it has risen above 39 0 C;
  • if the child is less than 3 months old and the temperature has reached 38 0 C and above;
  • If a child does not tolerate heat well, he has a predisposition to seizures, heart defects, arrhythmias and diseases of the nervous system.

Do not try to bring down the temperature to normal values, it is quite enough to lower it by 1 0 C 5.10 .

Important! In any case, when the child’s temperature rises, you need to consult a doctor and strictly follow his recommendations.

  1. Vasoconstrictor nasal drops

Decongestants can be used for nasal congestion to ease nasal breathing and reduce the risk of sinusitis. However, it is better to limit their use in order to avoid the addictive effect and the development of drug-induced rhinitis 4.5 .

  1. Remedies for sore throat

There are special solutions for rinsing the throat, such as HEXORAL ® SOLUTION 5 .

The main active ingredient of HEXORAL ® SOLUTION is the antiseptic hexetidine, which has antiseptic and antifungal effects 6 . It is active against some influenza A viruses, respiratory syncytial virus and herpes simplex virus type 1, which infect the respiratory tract, gram-positive bacteria, which include beta-hemolytic streptococcus, and fungi of the genus Candida, which are activated by a decrease in immunity and the use of antibiotics 6 .

The analgesic effect of hexetidine helps to cope with irritation and relieve sore throat. Due to its high safety profile, the drug can be used not only in adults, but also in children from 3 years of age.

HEXORAL ® in the form of AEROSOL is especially suitable for children who cannot gargle. HEXORAL ® AEROSOL for the whole family is equipped with several nozzles differing in color, which allows it to be used by several patients.

To soften the throat during the day, adults and children from 4 years old can use HEXORAL ® TABS, and adults and children from 6 years old TABS CLASSIC.Absorbable tablets HEXORAL ® TABS contain not only a broad-spectrum antiseptic, but also an anesthetic component that helps to cope with a sore throat 7 . The aromatic oils give the tablets a pleasant mint flavor.

HEXORAL ® TABS CLASSIC tablets have orange, lemon, honey-lemon or black currant taste, contain amylmetacresol and dichlorobenzyl alcohol 7 , which enhance antiseptic action of each other and are active against most Gram-positive bacteria and fungi.For adults and children over 12 years of age, HEXORAL ® TABS EXTRA may be suitable based on the same antiseptic components with the addition of lidocaine, which has a powerful analgesic effect and helps to fight even severe sore throat 8 .

  1. Cough suppressants

For acute respiratory infections and coughs, often caused by irritation of the pharynx and nasal mucus leakage into it, nasal hygiene, gargling and the use of drugs against sore throat can help eliminate this unpleasant symptom 5 .

For coughs associated with inflammation of the upper respiratory tract, in particular laryngitis, adults and children over 12 years of age can use cough syrup with raspberry flavor HEXO BRONCHO ® based on guaifenesin 9 It increases mucus secretion, dilutes phlegm and facilitates its passage. All this helps to soften the cough, accelerates the clearance of the respiratory tract 9 .

The information in this article is for reference only and does not replace professional medical advice.Consult a qualified professional for diagnosis and treatment.


  1. “Acute respiratory viral infections in adults” Clinical guidelines Reviewed and recommended for approval by the Profile Commission of the Russian Ministry of Health on the specialty “infectious diseases” at the meeting on March 25, 2014 and October 8, 2014.
  2. V.M. Delyagin. Acute respiratory diseases in children. Consilium Medicum. Pediatrics. (Suppl.) 2009; 01: p.24-27.
  3. Ovchinnikov A.Yu., Miroshnichenko N.A. Upper respiratory tract infections in children and adults: recommendations of an otorhinolaryngologist. RMJ “Medical Review” No. 26, 2016, p. 1739-1742.
  4. Svistushkin V.M., Mustafaev D.M. Acute respiratory viral infections: principles of rational therapy. Regular issues of “RMZh” No. 26, 2014, p. 1897.
  5. V.K. Tatochenko. SARS and flu in children. The main difficulties of diagnosis and the possibilities of rational therapy. “Attending physician”, No. 9, 2015.
  6. Instructions for the preparations HEXORAL ® SOLUTION.
  7. Instructions for the preparations HEXORAL ® TABS and TABS CLASSIC.
  8. Instructions for the preparation HEXORAL ® TABS EXTRA.
  9. Instructions for the preparation HEXO BRONCHO ® .

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Treatment of otitis media in adults and children in the Vitamed center

The most common disease today is otitis media, the treatment of which should be carried out by qualified specialists.The Vitamed Center in Voronezh offers professional assistance in combating the disease. Innovative techniques, state-of-the-art drugs and an individual approach guarantee that you can forget about the problem in a short time. The disease can manifest itself at any time of the year, although it is worth noting that the autumn-winter period is the most acute. When treating otitis media, attention should be paid to the causes of its occurrence.
The provoking factors are:

  • Viral infections;
  • Reduced immunity;
  • Anatomical features of the ear;
  • Bronchial asthma;
  • Rhinitis;
  • Diseases of the nose and throat.

In the summer, a common cause of the onset of the disease is the ingress of contaminated water from reservoirs into the ear canal. However, the most provoking factor is the complication of colds. Treatment of otitis media must be carried out promptly, since inflammation with swelling of the outer ear can cause severe complications.

Types of otitis media

Various infections can affect parts of the hearing aid. For this reason, this ailment manifests itself in different ways.Among the main types of the disease, the following should be highlighted:

  1. Acute catarrhal, the development of which is provoked by infections from the nasal cavity. Acute inflammation of the middle ear membrane occurs.
  2. Purulent is a complication of the initial symptoms that occurs without treatment. With this type of otitis media, it is strictly forbidden to act on the ear with heat.
  3. Exudative. The disease manifests itself as the appearance of congestion and tinnitus. The reason for this is the accumulation of secreted fluid – exudate.
  4. Bullous. It arises as a consequence of complications of the transferred colds.
  5. Adhesive. It manifests itself by the presence of adhesions in the auditory tube, which impairs hearing. In the absence of treatment for otitis media, patients often have to use a hearing aid.
  6. Fungal. It manifests itself as a fungal mildew that covers the eardrums and skin on the outside of the organ.
  7. Secretory. The main cause of development is untreated acute otitis media.Fluid accumulating in the ear clogs the auditory tubes, causing hearing loss.

Treatment of otitis media should be carried out by qualified medical professionals who will competently select the necessary technique, taking into account the type of disease and the individual characteristics of the patient.

Symptoms and treatment of otitis media

Depending on the type of disease, symptoms can manifest themselves in different ways. The disease can be recognized by the general picture, which is characterized by the following symptoms:

  • Discomfort, congestion and shooting pains in the ears;
  • Suppuration and rupture of the tympanic membrane;
  • Temperature rise;

If you find similar symptoms of otitis media, treatment should be prompt.Otherwise, complications may follow, manifested by hearing loss, severe tinnitus and dizziness. Thanks to modern medical developments, there are a large number of techniques to get rid of this ailment. The main methods of treating otitis media in adults include medicinal and surgical. Timely recognition of symptoms avoids surgery. Traditional medicine also gives good results. However, experts do not recommend trying to get rid of the disease on your own, especially during pregnancy.

Professionals of our center in Voronezh are ready to provide assistance and find the right treatment for otitis media in children and adults.