How do you repair a perforated ear drum?

The operation involves placing a graft under the perforation. The graft material is a thin sheet, usually taken from beneath the skin behind the ear - called temporalis fascia. This provides a scaffold for the cells of the migrate over the graft. . 

Our preference is to perform the surgery through an incision behind the ear. Whilst there is a scar, this is hidden behind the ear that usually heals very well and is not noticeable.

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A flap of ear canal skin is elevated to include the tympanic membrane to allow access to the middle ear

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TM flap.png

The graft is then placed under the tympanic membrane, covering the perforation. This acts as a scaffold allowing the edges of the perforation to migrate over the graft

TF graft.png

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Once the graft is in place, the ear is packed with a resorbable dressing

If some of the three tiny bones in the middle ear (ossicles) have been damaged , reconstruction of these (ossiculoplasty) can be performed at the same time. 

The operation usually takes about an hour and a half, and may be performed as a day case if carried out early in the day. 

dressing ear canal after tympanoplast.jpg