When the physician of today wants to examine an ear, he uses a concave head mirror and an artificial source of light, or an electric speculum. It is so very simple that it is almost hard to believe that this method has been developed step by step during a period of many years. Fabricius Hildanus1 (1560-1634) devised a bivalvular ear speculum similar to the nasal speculum now in use. In Wilde's2 textbook on the diseases of the ear, the following appears:
Passing for the present the subjective symptoms, which will best appear in the words of the patient, let us inquire into the best method of forming a diagnosis from the physical signs presented. The patient being placed opposite strong, direct sunlight, with the head inclined at such an angle that the sun's rays may fall directly through a tubular speculum upon the membrana tympani, we first
AMBERG E. ILLUMINATION OF THE EAR: A SHORT HISTORICAL SKETCH. Arch Otolaryngol. 1932;15(6):838–843. doi:10.1001/archotol.1932.03570030860003
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