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August 1964

Embryonal Connective Tissue and Exudate in Ear: A Histological Study of Ear Sections of Fetuses and Infants

Author Affiliations

M. S. McLellan, MD, Department of Pediatrics, Tulane University School of Medicine, 1430 Tulane Ave, New Orleans, La, 70112.; From the departments of pediatrics and pathology of Confederate Memorial Medical Center, Shreveport, La, and from the departments of internal medicine, pediatrics, and pathology and the Reference Library of Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans.

Am J Dis Child. 1964;108(2):164-170. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1964.02090010166008

In this investigation we studied sections of ear organs of fetuses * and young infants to determine the normal appearance at different ages of embryonal connective tissue and its appearance when exudate occupies the middle ear cavity. We mention Wharton's jelly, as it is a familiar tissue resembling, in some ways, embryonal connective tissue and described in detail elsewhere.1

Embryonal connective tissue has been studied for a long time. As early as 1869 von Tröltsch2 was familiar with it and was critical of those who confused it with free mucus in the middle ear cavity. In 1906 Gomperz3 showed microdrawings of the tissue in health and disease. Crowe and Polvogt4 showed photomicrographs of embryonal connective tissue as found in two elderly males, thought it similar to embryonal connective tissue in a 5-month-old infant, and wondered if the tissue might affect hearing.

In addition, current clinical literature considers