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Tympanoplasty is surgery to fix a torn eardrum. Your eardrum is a tissue found in the middle part of your ear. Your eardrum divides your outer ear canal from your inner ear.

Ear Anatomy


The week before your surgery:

  • Arrange to have someone drive you home after surgery.
  • Tell your surgeon about all the medicines you currently take. He or she will tell you if you need to stop taking any medicine before surgery, and when to stop. He or she will tell you which medicines to take or not take on the day of surgery.
  • You may need blood tests or x-rays before your surgery. You may also need hearing tests.

The night before your surgery:

You may be told not to eat or drink anything after midnight.

The day of your surgery:

  • You or a close family member will be asked to sign a legal document called a consent form. It gives healthcare providers permission to do the procedure or surgery. It also explains the problems that may happen, and your choices. Make sure all your questions are answered before you sign this form.
  • Take only the medicines your surgeon told you to take.
  • An IV will be placed in your vein. You may get medicine or liquids through the IV.
  • An anesthesiologist will talk to you before your surgery. You may need medicine to keep you asleep or numb an area of your body during surgery. Tell healthcare providers if you or anyone in your family has had a problem with anesthesia in the past.


What will happen:

  • Your surgeon will make an incision behind your ear or inside your ear canal. Any infection, damage, or disease inside your ear will be cleaned out. The edges of your torn eardrum will be trimmed, or your entire eardrum may be removed.
  • A graft will be used to close your torn eardrum or to replace your eardrum. A tissue graft may be taken from another part of your body. Antibiotic foam may also be placed in your ear canal to help prevent infection. Your incision will be closed with stitches.

After your surgery:

You will be taken to a room to rest until you are fully awake. You will be monitored closely for any problems. Do not get out of bed until your healthcare provider says it is okay. You will be able to go home or be taken to your hospital room.


  • You have a fever.
  • You get a cold or the flu.
  • You have questions or concerns about your surgery.

Seek Care Immediately if

  • You have bleeding in your ear.
  • You have dizziness that does not go away.
  • You have ringing in your ears that is getting worse.
  • You lose feeling in your face.


You may bleed more than expected or get an infection. Nerves that control your face muscles or sense of taste may be damaged. The small bones in your ear may be damaged. You may become dizzy. The tear in your eardrum may not heal completely. You may develop bands of scar tissue in your inner ear or narrowing of your ear canal. You may have hearing loss. Your eardrum may swell or you may have drainage. Your graft may fail or you may develop another tear in your eardrum.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

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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.

Learn more about Tympanoplasty (Precare)

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Further information

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