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Ear Discharge Treatment

Ear discharge or Otorrhea is any fluid that comes out from your ear. It is more likely earwax – which your ears normally discharge. Earwax is an oily viscous substance that your ears normally produce to keep dust, bacteria, foreign bodies and other microbes away. But when blood or any other pus-like fluid drains out of your ear, it indicates either a ruptured eardrum, foreign body or an ear infection. Sometimes, a fluid coming out of the ear can also indicate a severe infection, injury or an emergency medical condition – which needs immediate ear discharge treatment.

Ear Discharge Treatment

Ear Discharge Types – The discharge can be of different types – cloudy, whitish, clear, bloody, wax-like, yellow, greenish, pus or cloudy fluid depending on the cause.

Symptoms Associated with Ear Discharge

The symptoms associated with an ear discharge depends on the cause and may include ringing in the ear (tinnitus), vertigo, itching, fever and ear pain and sometimes hearing loss. The symptoms can be mild, slow, gradual or develop suddenly and become severe. Depending on the cause, the drainage can be thick and whitish, watery, bloody or purulent.


Ear Discharge Causes

Discharges from your ear in most of the time is earwax making its way out of your body. However, discharge can be caused by other conditions such as infection or injury.

Middle ear infection: Otitis media or middle ear infection is a common cause of discharge from your ear. This condition occurs when viruses or bacteria make their way into the middle ear causing the fluid to build up behind the eardrum. Too much fluid builds up leads to ear discharge with a ruptured eardrum. Even external ear infection (otitis externa) can also cause ear discharge.

Trauma: Ear canal trauma can also cause discharge. This trauma occurs while cleaning your ear with cotton if you push earwax and cotton bud too deep.

Swimmer’s ear: Swimmer’s ear also commonly known as otitis externa – it results when bacteria or fungus infect your ear canal. It mostly occurs when you spend a long time in the water.

The other conditions that can cause ear discharge include fracture of the base of the skull, necrotizing external otitis, and cancer of the ear canal. These are rare but serious conditions.

If the discharge from your ear is white, yellow or bloody and if you are experiencing discharge for more than five days, you should immediately consult an ENT doctor to know the cause and get the treatment done.

Ear Discharge after Mastoidectomy – People who have undergone mastoidectomy may have blood-stained drainage from their ear for a few days or up to 2 weeks.

Ear discharge after tympanoplasty – Following tympanoplasty ear discharge or drainage for a few days is common and it is not a cause for concern. Soreness and other symptoms will go away within 3 to 5 days after the procedure.

Ear Discharge in Newborn – If you notice ear discharge in new-born or infant or a child less than 6 months old. If the drainage is white, cloudy, looks yellow or green or smells bad and the child is crying like in pain, then seek an appointment with an ENT specialist at the earliest. Even if you think that the problem is not urgent, but the child needs to be seen, book an appointment.

Ear discharge diagnosis

An ENT Specialist first asks a few questions to the patients and then performs a physical examination. They look into the patients ear with an otoscope to examine and identify the cause of ear discharge. They also see whether the fluid is built up behind the eardrum. Ent doctors will also carry out a hearing test as well. If the cause is not clear through examination, the doctor may order CT or MRI and an audiometry test.

Ear Discharge Treatment

ENT Specialists provide treatment for ear discharge depending on the cause. A mild ear infection might clear up within the first week or two without requiring any treatment.

Ear Discharge Treatment Medicine: To deal with any pain or discomfort Ent doctors prescribe medicines.

If the ear discharge is due to the ruptured eardrum and the tear does not heal naturally, then an ENT doctor applies a special patch on the tear to keep the hole closed while it heals. If this patch does not work, the doctor might perform surgery to repair your ear (tympanoplasty) using a patch from your own skin. Read Tympanoplasty

Ear Discharge antibiotics: If ear discharge is due to a bacterial infection your doctor will prescribe antibiotic ear drops or oral antibiotics depending on the severity of the condition and the symptoms you have.

Prevention of Ear Discharge

To prevent ear discharge, you should take the following measures:

  • Don’t try to clean your ears even if you notice excess earwax. It is better to bring your condition to the notice of your Ent doctor.
  • Don’t try to put even the soft cotton buds into your ears to clean them.
  • Dry your ear perfectly as soon as you come out of the water after swimming.
  • Stay away from people who are sick to prevent ear infection.
  • Clean your ears dry after a shower to prevent the accumulation of fluids inside your ear.

Sudden ear discharge can be a sign of a serious underlying condition. If you notice any ear discharge, and other associated symptoms – such as ear pain, vertigo, fever, itching, ringing in the ear, hearing loss, then meet Dr Neetu Modgil.


Happy Patients


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  • Dr. Neetu really cares for her patients & this clearly shows. My experience with her has been very good. She is very patient, clearly explains the treatment & answers any queries regarding it. Thank you for the services.

    S. Kiran

  • Dr Neetu Modgil was excellent. Thorough, kind and patient, she did an excellent job. I will be requesting her services for my next appointment.

    Chandu Reddy

  • She is a blessing to this profession . So humble and approachable. she operated my ear , when every doctor i visited said no to me saying the risk of surgery is more . But she not only took risk...

    Ipshita Purohit

  • In my life i have met number of great doctor , but the way she talks , listens and convince the patient that is very rare and incredible , Very much experience ,humble doctor , highly recommended for any ENT...

    Rahul Yadav

  • It was good experience with doctor Neethu the way she treated me, felt like she treated me like her kid, Listens to our problems patiently,Her analysis and diagnosis was good.Clinic's ambience was quite good as well. I'd recommend her.

    Vijay Panwar

  • Visited for Ear wax. Explained well to me. removed my ear wax very well. Dr. is Very friendly with me.

    Aman Singh Mehta

  • She listen to my problem very attentively and prescribed medicine to take care of my problem. Besides being a good doctor she’s a wonderful human being too.

    Neha Nagar

  • I went for throat infection and clicking sound. She was very patient to hear my issue. Then did her examination and explained me the issue. She don't writes unnecessary tests and give minimum and required medication. I wish to have...

    Vinit Pandey

  • she is a friendly doctor and explained the disease very well. She had helped me out in my difficult times. Am very thankful yo her. Would like to recommend her to others.

    Ms. Atreyee Pal

  • I am obliged for everything doctor has done for me from day one. I am absolutely fine three months post surgery. I had many doubts before surgery but now as I m going well , I am happy and content.


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