Is otitis media with effusion a biofilm infection?

Clin Otolaryngol Allied Sci. 2004 Feb;29(1):38-46. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2273.2004.00767.x.


Recent attention has focused on the possibility that otitis media with effusion (OME) may represent a chronic infective state such as those evidenced in conditions secondary to biofilms or small colony variants. This review discusses the evidence suggesting that this may indeed be the case and explains why this may prove to be important in the future management of this condition by discussing recent advances in understanding these bacterial phenotypic variants.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Adhesion
  • Biofilms / growth & development*
  • Chronic Disease
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Drug Resistance
  • Humans
  • Mucous Membrane / pathology
  • Otitis Media with Effusion / diagnosis
  • Otitis Media with Effusion / microbiology*
  • Otitis Media with Effusion / therapy
  • Polysaccharides / metabolism
  • RNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Signal Transduction


  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Polysaccharides
  • RNA, Bacterial