Although a radical mastoidectomy is undertaken primarily to protect the patient (and the ear) from the more serious consequences of chronic suppuration, it is important to know not only what is likely to happen to the hearing if the operation is done but what is likely to happen if it is not done. It is important to know this not only for the worse ear but for the better ear. The surgeon seems loath to test the better ear or even the worse ear before or after mastoidectomy.
By a radical mastoidectomy I mean the necessary cleaning out of the mastoid cells plus the lowering of the posterior canal wall, the removal of the malleus, incus and diseased membranes and bone in or about the middle ear, aditus, antrum and eustachian tube, and the cutting of a meatal flap. This procedure cleans out the middle ear, with the exception of
FOWLER EP. HEARING BEFORE AND AFTER RADICAL MASTOIDECTOMY: PLEA FOR AVOIDANCE OF THIS OPERATION BY EARLY ADEQUATE DRAINAGE; SUMMARY OF FIFTY-FOUR CASES WITH AUDIOGRAMS AND CLINICAL AND ROENTGEN FINDINGS. Arch Otolaryngol. 1937;26(4):387–394. doi:10.1001/archotol.1937.00650020429001
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