Shepard grommet tympanostomy tube complications in children with chronic otitis media with effusion

Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2010 Aug;267(8):1221-4. doi: 10.1007/s00405-010-1220-4. Epub 2010 Mar 5.


The objective of this study was to determine tympanostomy tube complications in children with chronic otitis media with effusion who were treated with Shepard grommet tympanostomy tube insertion. This tube type was selected as it is the most commonly used one in our clinic. The medical records of 162 ears of 87 children (52 male and 35 female) were reviewed retrospectively. The children were between 3 to 16 years old (mean age = 8.1 +/- 3.1). The patients were followed up 6-66 months (mean 23.3 +/- 14.9 months) after tympanostomy tube insertion. We reviewed age, sex, time to tube extrusion and complications. In all patients the indication for surgery was chronic middle ear effusion. Otorrhea occurred in nine ears (5.6%). Granulation tissue was seen in two ears (1.2%). Complications after tympanostomy tube extrusion included myringosclerosis (34.6%), persistent perforation (5.6%), atrophy (23.5%), retraction (16.7%) and medial displacement of tubes (1.2%). The average extrusion time was 8.5 +/- 4.6 months (range 1-24) for Shepard grommet tympanostomy tubes. Complications of tympanostomy tube insertion are common. Myringosclerosis, tympanic membrane atrophy and otorrhea are the most frequently appearing complications. But they are generally insignificant and cosmetic. Consequently, in the majority of these complications there is no need for any management.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Atrophy
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cholesteatoma, Middle Ear / etiology
  • Chronic Disease
  • Equipment Failure
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Ear Ventilation / adverse effects*
  • Otitis Media with Effusion / surgery*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sclerosis
  • Turkey
  • Tympanic Membrane / pathology
  • Tympanic Membrane Perforation / etiology