Otitis Externa

Written by: Solaris Diagnostics


Otitis externa (also known as “swimmer’s ear”) is inflammation of the external ear canal.  It is often caused by bacterial or fungal infection that responds well to topical treatment. However, some people are more susceptible to severe infection that can invade surrounding structures.  When this happens, it is called malignant otitis externa, and can lead to serious disease and complications.  

According to the CDC, there are 4,670,000 cases of otitis media every year.  Over the course of a year, otitis externa is responsible for 567,000 ER visits and 23,200 hospitalizations every year.

Solaris has a PCR-based panel, the Ear Panel, that can quickly identify all of these otitis externa pathogens with a simple swab.  Results are available within 24 hours and can help clinicians target their treatment to the specific pathogen.

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