Department of Otorhinolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery

McGovern Medical School

Swimmer’s Ear

Swimmer’s ear, or otitis externa, is a fairly common infection that usually manifests itself with the symptoms of ear pain and possible drainage from the ear as well. It can sometimes be associated with swelling and redness around the ear as well. Hearing can be affected due to mechanical obstruction of the sound conduction pathway as a result of the external ear canal swelling. Otitis externa is usually treated successfully with antibiotics, though sometimes a small ear wick (sponge) may need to be place to stent the ear canal open to allow the medicine to get to the site of infection.