Otitis due to biofilm in the middle ear
Antibiotics are often the wrong therapy for middle ear infections in children. Especially if it is a chronic form, these drugs do more harm than good. Bacterial biofilms are the cause in many such cases, according to a new study.
The study, in which various research institutions and children's hospitals took part, found the mucous films of bacterial colonies in the middle ear of almost all children who were being treated for chronic otitis. If one assumes that most bacteria in biofilms are resistant to antibiotics, the move away from antibiotics is obvious, summarizes study leader Garth Ehrlich. After all, you risk breeding even more resistant strains of bacteria.
More promising is a probiotic form of therapy, in which beneficial bacteria are preemptively administered, which could prevent the formation of unhe althy biofilms in the middle ear. Experiments are already underway at the University of Florida with bacteria intended to prevent tooth decay in children's teeth. These settle in those areas of the teeth where the enamel annihilators normally grow.
Until such a procedure can also be used against the biofilms in the middle ear, the classic treatment method for repeated inflammation is the tympanostomy tube, which is inserted into the eardrum to enable ventilation of the middle ear and allow fluid to drain to the outside.