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Letters to the Editor
August 17, 2009

The Common Cold and Concurrent Otitis Media

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2009;135(8):836. doi:10.1001/archoto.2009.96

In a recent article titled “Rate of Concurrent Otitis Media [OM] in Upper Respiratory Tract Infections With Specific Viruses,” Alper et al1 reported a new OM rate of 0.43 in children with viral upper respiratory tract infection (vURTI) with and without coldlike illness. Of 134 episodes of vURTI, OM was detected in 60 (45%); of these, coldlike illness was present in 42 (70%) and absent in 18 (30%). Eighty-two percent of OM episodes were OM with effusion (OME) without acute symptoms; there were only 19 episodes of acute OM (AOM) reported.