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What is glue ear?

Answered by Dr Ellie Cannon
8th September 2015
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Glue ear is a build up of sticky fluid in the middle ear. This prevents parts of the middle ear from moving freely, which results in mild to moderate hearing loss. The middle ear is right behind the eardrum and is made up of three tiny bones that carry sound vibrations from the eardrum to the inner ear. The build up of fluid that causes glue ear prevents the passing of sound vibrations. Glue ear is also known as ‘otitis media with effusion’ (OME).

Glue ear can cause minor temporary delays in speech and development in younger children as a result of the hearing loss. However, some of the problems associated with glue ear tend to get better by themselves in a short period of time.

 

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