SourceJournal of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery, 39, 3, (2010), pp. 259-68
01 juni 2010
Article / Letter to editor
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Journal of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery
SubjectNCEBP 2: Evaluation of complex medical interventions
BACKGROUND: Patulous eustachian tube (PET) has a major impact on a patient's quality of life. The purpose of this study was to understand mechanisms behind the symptoms, develop treatments based on these, and develop and use a questionnaire to measure changes in PET symptoms with a novel intervention. Our hypothesis is that PET symptoms can be addressed at the level of the eardrum more easily than at the level of the eustachian tube. METHODS: In a population of 14 PET subjects and 6 fresh temporal bones, several investigations were performed. Nasal audiometry was used to measure frequencies preferentially transmitted to the ear in PET subjects. An intervention consisting of mass loading of the eardrum was devised in the temporal bones to damp these frequencies. This was then applied to subjects with PET. A questionnaire was developed and administered to measure the response to this intervention. This questionnaire included the more common symptoms associated with PET, such as echoing sounds, increased environmental sounds, and a plugging sensation in the ear. Mass loading of the eardrum was performed with Blu Tack, a clay-like, nontoxic substance. RESULTS/CONCLUSION: Low frequencies are preferentially transmitted in PET, and eardrum vibrations to these can be mitigated with mass loading. Mass loading in human subjects significantly reduced major symptoms of PET, although temporarily.
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- Academic publications 
- Faculty of Medical Sciences 
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