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A tear or hole in the membrane of the middle ear is called a perforated or ruptured eardrum. This can happen if an infection builds up inside the ear or if the eardrum gets injured. You may find it hard to hear out of that ear or may hear a buzzing sound. You may have an earache or have fluids that drain from the ear.
Your eardrum should heal on its own in a few weeks, and you should hear normally then. If you have an infection, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. Over-the-counter pain reliever may help your earache.
Your doctor will check to see if your eardrum has healed. If not, you may need surgery to repair the eardrum.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call your doctor or nurse advice line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if:
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Current as of: March 1, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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