Does your child have frequent ear infections? Ear, Nose and Throat specialist Gerard O’Halloran, MD explains when ear tubes might be appropriate.
“Most children will have an occasional ear infection, but some kids experience them more frequently or more severely, or can’t be treated with antibiotics for any number of reasons. Other children may not be hearing well due to fluid behind the eardrum.
“In these cases, the child’s pediatrician or primary care provider will often refer the child to an ear, nose, and throat specialist for a consultation about inserting ear tubes.
“The criteria for the procedure is pretty straight forward. “We will consider inserting tubes for children who have had three or more infections in the last six months, who have experienced complications from antibiotic treatments, or who are no longer responding to treatment. We’ll also consider it if the child’s hearing is affected for an extended period of time. That’s always a bit of a judgment call.
“I often evaluate kids who are having difficulty in school such as learning, speech and language development, or special needs children for whom we want to optimize everything, including their hearing. When kids struggle just because they aren’t hearing well, ear tubes can provide immediate relief.
“Once your primary care provider has referred you for an ear tube consultation, we’ll talk about the benefits of the procedure, cost of the surgery, the risks of anesthesia, and possible complications. It’s your opportunity to ask me all your questions, and make a plan together for your child.”
Dr. O’Halloran sees patients in Northfield, Faribault and Lakeville Clinics. Appointments: (952) 469-0500