Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Barotitis Media Prevention

Prevention of barotitis media includes:

  • Perform Valsalva maneuver when flying.
    • Close your mouth and pinch your nose.
    • Take a deep breath.
    • Expel the air from your lungs against the pinched nose and closed mouth: this forces air into the middle ear.
  • Use special ear plugs while flying.
    • EarPlanes

EarPlanes are special earplugs that may decrease the uncomfortable feeling in the ears commonly associated with air travel. The ceramic pressure regulator in EarPlanes slows the flow of air into and out of the ear canal, lessening the air pressure difference on the exterior and interior of the middle ear and helping the Eustachian tubes to function more normally. This device can be found in many pharmacies and airport gift shops.

Continue to Barotitis Media Complications

Last Updated: Dec 1, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Barotitis Media References
  1. Brown M, Jones J, Krohmer J. Pseudoephedrine for the prevention of barotitis media: a controlled clinical trial in underwater divers. Ann Emerg Med. 1992 Jul;21(7):849-52. [1610044]
  2. Rayman RB: Passenger safety, health, and comfort: a review. Aviat Space Environ Med 1997 May; 68(5): 432-40. [9143755]
  3. Stangerup SE, Tjernstrom O, Harcourt J, Klokker M, Stokholm J. Barotitis in children after aviation; prevalence and treatment with Otovent. J Laryngol Otol. 1996 Jul;110(7):625-8. [8759532]
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