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Ear Polyps in Children


What are ear polyps?

An ear polyp is a growth on the inside of your child's ear canal. Ear polyps may be caused by chronic ear infections or a cholesteatoma. A cholesteatoma is a skin cyst inside of the ear.

What are other signs and symptoms of ear polyps?

Your child may have ear discharge. The discharge may be bloody or have pus. The polyp may block his ear canal and cause some hearing loss. Your child may also have ear pain.

How are ear polyps diagnosed?

Your child's healthcare provider will examine your child's ear and ask about his symptoms. He may also ask if your child has had repeated ear infections or other medical conditions.

How are ear polyps treated?

Treatment depends on the cause of your child's ear polyp. Your child may need any of the following:

  • Antibiotics help treat a bacterial infection.
  • Steroids help decrease swelling and pain
  • NSAIDs , such as ibuprofen, help decrease swelling, pain, and fever. This medicine is available with or without a doctor's order. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems in certain people. If your child takes blood thinner medicine, always ask if NSAIDs are safe for him or her. Always read the medicine label and follow directions. Do not give these medicines to children under 6 months of age without direction from your child's healthcare provider.
  • Acetaminophen decreases pain and fever. It is available without a doctor's order. Ask how much to give your child and how often to give it. Follow directions. Acetaminophen can cause liver damage if not taken correctly.
  • Surgery to remove the polyp may be needed if medicines do not treat the polyp.

When should I contact my child's healthcare provider?

  • Your child's symptoms do not get better, or they get worse.
  • You have questions or concerns about your child's condition or care.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's healthcare providers to decide what care you want for your child. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.