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Cholesteatoma at ENTACC

ENTACC Services, Patient Exam

What is a cholesteatoma?

A cholesteatoma is an abnormal growth that develops in the middle ear behind the eardrum. It can affect the mastoid cavity and bone. A cholesteatoma begins as a cyst that grows and causes bone damage and hearing loss.Cholesteatoma causesOur general ENT services include:

Cholesteatoma causes

A normally functioning eustachian tube equalizes air pressure in the ear. However, allergies and viruses can cause the eustachian tube to perform poorly, leading to a vacuum in the ear. 

This partial vacuum can cause pressure to stretch the eardrum, which creates a cyst that can then fill with waste material and dead skin cells. This cyst can become infected and may even be present at birth.

What symptoms should I look for?

The symptoms of a cholesteatoma are similar to other ear conditions, so CT scans and electronystagmography are used to rule out other conditions. Signs to look out for include:

  • Ear drainage
  • A feeling of fullness in the ear
  • Hearing loss
  • Earache
  • Dizziness

When left untreated, cholesteatomas can get bigger and lead to other symptoms like:

  • Deafness
  • Facial paralysis
  • Brain abscess
  • Meningitis

Cholesteatoma treatment

The first step in treatment is for your doctor to determine your cholesteatoma’s size and growth rate. After that, the doctor can recommend the treatment that will work best for you. Usually, treatment is started by first controlling the infection with antibiotics or ear drops.

In some cases, an outpatient cholesteatoma surgery is needed to remove and prevent further infection. A second procedure may also be required to reconstruct damage and make sure that the cholesteatoma is gone.

If you think you are suffering from a cholesteatoma, schedule an appointment with ENTACC today!

Erin O. from Downingtown, PA

“I had stopped taking my allergy medicine and ended up with the worse sinus infection of my life. The staff at Ear, Nose & Throat Associates of Chester County genuinely will provide you with the best care. I was overwhelmed by the kindness, concern, and sense of urgency everyone gave. My phone calls were returned promptly and time was made to see me in the office when it was an emergency.”

Connie J. from West Chester, PA

“I can say after years of coming to Ear, Nose & Throat Associates of Chester County, my relationship and trust with Dr. Marriotti has grown tremendously. He is personable, friendly and I appreciate his input with my hearing condition. The staff at Ear, Nose & Throat Associates of Chester County is always cheery and pleasant. I enjoy my visits and always leave feeling like I am in good hands.”

Dauna P. from University Lincoln, PA

“I am so grateful for the care Dr. Picariello has given for my complex and serious brain diagnosis. He has made such an impression on the way the process was handled. I shall never forget him and how humble he was when dealing with my condition. He is truly one of the best around and I am fortunate for his high ethical standards and professionalism.”

Kathy S. from Schwenksvile, PA

“The knowledge, encouragement, concern, and individual attention the doctors of Ear, Nose & Throat Associates of Chester County had demonstrated was far beyond my expectations. The office atmosphere is professional yet friendly. The doctors know their profession well and are able to explain in basic understandable terms. They made sure we were comfortable and took their time going over everything extensively.”

James B., from Coatesville, PA

“The allergy shot process has been a great experience and has prevented a reoccurrence of my nasal polyps, and decreased the need for my asthma inhaler. The allergy staff is excellent.”