Ventilation Tubes (Grommets)
Grommets are tiny plastic tubes that are inserted into the ear drum to ventilate the middle ear and drain any fluid.
What to expect with the procedure
Grommet tube insertion is a short procedure taking no more than 10 minutes. It is performed under general anaesthetic in hospital as a day case. Under microscopy, the ear canal is cleared to visualise the ear drum. A small incision is then made in the ear drum and any middle ear fluid is suctioned. A small silicon tube or grommet is then inserted.
After a short period in recovery, your child will be transferred to the day stay ward. Here he/she will be observed for 3-4 hours and then discharged home.
There is very little pain associated with the procedure and usually, Panadol is all that is required. It is not uncommon to have a little blood-stained discharge from the ear in the first 24 hours. Usually, your child can return to school/childcare 24 hours after the procedure. Most grommets typically last for 6-12 months before they self-extrude. During this time it is important to avoid getting any water in the ear as this can result in an infection.
I will usually review your child 6 weeks after the procedure and again at 6 months.