After Ear Tubes

After surgery, your child will be taken to the recovery room to be monitored by a nurse. You may be invited into the recovery room as your child becomes aware of their surroundings and starts looking for you. Your child should be able to go home the same day as the surgery once they have fully recovered from the anesthetic. This usually takes less than one hour.

Your child may resume a normal diet after he or she has fully recovered from the anesthetic. Even though they may be hungry immediately after surgery, it is best to feed them slowly to prevent postoperative nausea and vomiting. Occasionally, children may vomit one or two times immediately after surgery. If vomiting persists, your doctor may prescribe medication to settle the stomach.

Tympanostomy tubes usually stay in place from 6 to 18 months. If they stay in longer than three years, they may need to be surgically removed. It is important to have an ear check-up about every three to six months during this time period. An audiogram is usually obtained at some point after the ear has healed. The tubes eventually fall out of the eardrum on their own as the ear heals. Some children may have mild discomfort or bloody drainage at this time. The small hole in the eardrum at the old tube site usually heals within several weeks.

While the tubes are in place you will be instructed to place ear plugs in the child’s ears when going in pools, rivers, lakes and oceans. This is to prevent dirty water from getting into the middle ear and causing an infection. If you notice drainage from the ears at any point after the tubes are placed, call our office. Your child does not need to wear ear plugs while taking a shower or bath. Your doctor will instruct you when it is safe to allow water in the ears.

If you have any questions, please call our office at Barrington Office Phone Number 847-888-9000.