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Otomycosis: Care Instructions

Anatomy of ear, including outer ear, ear canal, eardrum, and inner ear.


Otomycosis is a fungal infection in the ear canal. It causes pain and itching. Sometimes fluid leaks from the ear. The infection can also cause a feeling of fullness in the ear and sometimes hearing loss.

People who have diabetes or a weak immune system are more likely to get this problem.

People who were treated with antibiotics for an ear infection may also get this fungus.

After you have had an infection, you may get it again. Treatment may include putting medicine in your ear. It also includes cleaning the ear often.

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.

How can you care for yourself at home?

  • Take your medicines exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor or nurse advice line if you think you are having a problem with your medicine. You will get more details on the specific medicines your doctor prescribes.
  • Clean your ear canal and put in the medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Follow the schedule that the doctor gives you.
  • Do not put anything in your ear unless your doctor says it is okay. This includes cotton swabs or any other objects, such as your finger.
  • If you have diabetes, keep your blood sugar in your target range. This will help you fight the fungal infection.
  • Keep your ears dry.
    • Take baths until your doctor says you can take showers again.
    • When you wash your hair, use cotton lightly coated with petroleum jelly as an earplug. Do not use plastic earplugs.
    • Do not swim until your doctor says you can.
    • If you get water in your ears, turn your head to each side and pull the earlobe in different directions. This will help the water run out. If your ears are still wet, use a hair dryer set on the lowest heat. Hold the dryer 8 to 10 centimetres (3 to 4 inches) from your ear.

When should you call for help?

Call your doctor or nurse advice line now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You have a new or higher fever.
  • You have new or worse pain, swelling, warmth, or redness around or behind your ear.
  • You have new or increasing pus or blood draining from your ear.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if:

  • You notice changes in hearing.
  • You do not get better as expected.

Where can you learn more?

Go to

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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.