Ailments & ConditionsYour Health

Cholesteatoma – Causes, Symptoms, and Diagnosis

A cholesteatoma is a noncancerous and abnormal growth on the skin. It often occurs in the middle area of the ear, especially behind your eardrum. Most cases are caused by an infection in the middle ear or a defect at birth. The condition usually develops as a sac or cyst that sheds old skin layers. If left untreated, it would affect muscle function in the face, balance, and hearing. This article takes a look at the common causes, symptoms, and diagnostic techniques for cholesteatoma.

4 Causes of Cholesteatoma

Chronic Infections

The most common cause of cholesteatoma is a repeated infection in the middle ear. This condition is also known as otitis media. It happens when pus and fluid accumulate in the middle ear, right behind the eardrum or tympanic membrane. You might feel ear pain and discomfort. The infection is usually triggered by allergies or a cold that would block drainage and introduce viruses or bacteria. If left untreated, it can cause a chronic cholesteatoma, which can spread to the brain and inner year. Middle ear infections are more common in children, but it can also happen in adults. Most cases can be treated easily with antibiotics. An ear tube placement can also be suggested for long-established otitis media. [1]