Mastoiditis is swelling or infection of the small air cells in the mastoid bone of the ear. Over time, this can cause the bone tissue to break down.
Mastoiditis is most often caused by a bacterial infection due to a long lasting middle ear infection .
This problem is more common in young children. Things that may raise the risk are:
- A weak immune system
- Recent surgery to remove diseased mastoid air cells
Problems may be:
- Swelling and redness behind the ear, pushing it forward
- Ear pain
- Discharge from the ear
- Decreased hearing
The doctor will ask about your symptoms and health history. You will be asked about your history of ear infections. A physical exam will be done. This is often enough to make the diagnosis.
Treatment options are:
Antibiotics will be given to treat infection. This is often done by IV and then by mouth.
Mastoiditis is most often caused by an ear infection. Getting treated for an ear infection may lower the risk of mastoiditis.
- Reviewer: EBSCO Medical Review Board James P. Cornell, MD
- Review Date: 09/2019 -
- Update Date: 12/03/2019 -