Cartilage shield tympanoplasty: a reliable technique

Otol Neurotol. 2005 Sep;26(5):838-41. doi: 10.1097/01.mao.0000185046.38900.1f.


Objective: Cartilage shield tympanoplasty is a procedure for repairing total tympanic membrane perforations. This procedure is indicated primarily for patients with total perforations, severely atelectatic tympanic membranes, and failures of previous tympanoplasty associated with chronic eustachian tube dysfunction. Although the graft take of this technique has been reported to be excellent, there have been concerns regarding hearing results because it replaces the entire tympanic membrane with cartilage. The purpose of this study was to report our experience with this technique.

Study design: Retrospective chart review.

Setting: Tertiary care hospital: Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center, Richmond, Virginia, USA.

Patients: Between 1998 and 2003, 62 patients were identified who had a cartilage shield tympanoplasty. The patients' ages ranged from 7 to 72 years (mean, 32 years).

Intervention: Therapeutic.

Main outcome measures: Graft take was evaluated in all patients and postoperative complications were noted. In 58 patients, pre- and postoperative audiograms were available and pure-tone average air-bone gaps were compared using the Student's t test.

Results: Graft take was accomplished in 61 patients (98.4%) and there were no postoperative complications. The average preoperative and postoperative pure-tone average air-bone gap was 32.4 +/- 14.1 dB and 24 +/- 13.7 dB, respectively (p < 0.005).

Conclusion: This study reveals that cartilage shield tympanoplasty has a high degree of graft take, and hearing results are satisfactory.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Audiometry, Pure-Tone
  • Cartilage / transplantation*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Tympanic Membrane Perforation / surgery*
  • Tympanoplasty / methods*