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Discharge Instructions for Tympanoplasty

Your child had a procedure called tympanoplasty to repair a damaged eardrum. Here's what you need to know about home care following this procedure.

When to seek medical care

Call your surgeon right away if your child has any of the following:

  • Increased redness or swelling around the ear

  • Dizziness

  • Drainage from the ear with an odor or increased drainage

  • Ongoing headache

  • Seeing double or blurry vision

  • Fever above 101.0°F (38.4°C)

  • Weak muscles of the face

  • Unusual eye movements

  • Ringing in the ears

What to expect

  • Expect a small amount of drainage from the ear.

  • Numbness of the out part of the ear. This will return to normal.

  • Pain in the jaw. Change in or loss of taste. This will also return to normal.

Ear care

  • Don't let your child lie flat for the first 24 hours.

  • Discourage your child from blowing his or her nose. Don’t allow your child to hold the nose closed.

  • Show your child how to sneeze with the mouth open.

  • Allow your child to shower as necessary, starting 3 days after surgery. A tub bath is allowed as long as your child doesn’t put his or her head in the water.

  • Keep the ear dry. You can place a cotton ball dabbed with a small amount of petroleum jelly in the outer ear to keep water out during a bath or shower.

  • Give your child medication exactly as directed.


  • Make sure your child avoids activities that involve heavy lifting and straining.

  • Get your doctor's permission before allowing your child to fly in a plane or before swimming.

Follow-up care

  • Make follow-up appointments as directed by our staff.

  • Ask your doctor when your child may return to school.


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