What is the Eustachian tube?

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Lawrence T. Chiaramonte, MD
Allergy & Immunology
The Eustachian tube runs from the normally air-filled middle ear to the side and back of the mouth and throat. The throat end of this tube is C-shaped cartilage, which is closed while at rest and then opened by the surrounding muscles. As a child grows, the Eustachian tube changes its relationship to the surrounding muscles, with the result that in the period between 2 and 8 years of age it is difficult to open the tube.
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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.