Advertisement

What is the treatment for a cholesteatoma?

Surgery is almost always necessary to treat cholesteatoma. During the surgical procedure, the cyst is removed. There are several types of surgeries that are available for this procedure. Surgery may be performed in several locations in the ear, and the ear may be accessed through the ear canal or through a slit behind the ear. These decisions are made based on the size of the cyst as well as the size of the ear. In some cases, restorative surgery is also available in order to restore hearing.
Eric E. Smouha, MD
Ear, Nose & Throat (Otolaryngology)

The treatment of cholesteatoma is always surgical. It usually involves raising the eardrum and opening the bone behind the ear to remove the growth (tympano-mastoidectomy). We try to reconstruct the eardrum and hearing apparatus at the time of surgery to manage the disease in a single-stage operation if at all possible, and we have been successful in the majority of cases.

The operation is done in the hospital under general anesthesia and takes approximately three hours. Most patients go home the same day and return to work or school after one week. Cholesteatomas can re-grow in the best of hands, so close follow-up every six months for several years after surgery is advisable.

Continue Learning about Ear Disorders

Essential Facts About Ear Infections
Essential Facts About Ear Infections
While ear infections tend to affect kids—5 out of 6 children will experience this condition by the time they’re 3 years old—adults are not immune. And...
Read More
How does earwax affect ear disorders?
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)
Earwax, known as cerumen, plays a role in protecting the ear canal and keeping it clean. But for som...
More Answers
What are the different types of ear infections?
Univ. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family MedicineUniv. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family Medicine
There are three main kinds of ear infections, which are called acute otitis (oh-TIE-tus) media (AOM)...
More Answers
All About Ear Infections
All About Ear Infections

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.