[Skip to Navigation]
August 1988

Changes of the Permeability of Round Window Membrane in Otitis Media

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Otolaryngology, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1988;114(8):895-897. doi:10.1001/archotol.1988.01860200079023

• The effects of endotoxin, exotoxin, and otitis media on the permeability of the round window membrane (RWM) in chinchillas was investigated by detecting tetraethylammonium chloride, applied to the RWM, using a potassium-selective microelectrode in the scala tympani. The RWM, 48 hours following the application of endotoxin or exotoxin, became significantly more permeable to tetraethylammonium chloride than the normal RWM. Two weeks after the obstruction of the eustachian tube, the permeability of the RWM was decreased. These results suggest that bacterial toxins and the consequential migration of chemical inflammatory mediators act as promotive factors of RWM permeability, and that a pathologic thickness of the RWM and the presence of effusion induced by the obstruction of the eustachian tube acts as an inhibitory factor. In the clinical role of RWM permeability in human otitis media, these two factors must be taken into consideration.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 1988;114:895-897)

Add or change institution