A tympanoplasty is performed if the hole in your eardrum is large or if you have a chronic ear infection that cannot be cured with antibiotics. You will most likely be in the hospital for this surgery and will be placed under general anesthesia. You will be unconscious during this procedure.
First, the surgeon will use a laser to carefully remove any excess tissue or scar tissue that has built up in your middle ear. Then, a small piece of your own tissue will be taken from a vein or muscle sheath and grafted onto your eardrum to close the hole. The surgeon will either go through your ear canal to repair the eardrum, or make a small incision behind your ear and access your eardrum that way.
This procedure typically takes two to three hours.
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A graft consisting of cartilage, fat (often harvested from behind the ear), or fascia (tissue overlaying muscle) is used to reconstruct the eardrum. Depending on the size and location of the perforation, tympanoplasty can be performed in the procedure room under local anaesthetic. In this case, the surgeon enters through the external ear canal.
In more complex cases, tympanoplasty may be performed in the operating room under general anaesthetic. In the operating room, the surgeon may decide to either make a small incision above the ear canal to approach the repair (endaural incision) or they can go behind the ear (post-auricular).
Tympanoplasty usually takes from 2 to 3 hours. Recovery from general anesthetic can take several hours. Your child might be prescribed medications after the surgery.
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The difference between tympanoplasty and myringoplasty is that tympanoplasty is (surgery) reconstructive surgery to the middle ear or eardrum while myringoplasty is (surgery) the closure of the perforation of pars tensa of the tympanic membrane.
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