Retrospective study of fungal elements by potassium hydroxide mount in chronic otitis media

Santosh U. P., Sanjay V. C.


Background: Chronic otitis media is defined as persistent disease of middle ear. Fungi can either be the primary pathogen or be superimposed on bacterial infections or can be secondary pathogen in previously perforated tympanic membrane. Keeping view of high prevalence of fungal infection of middle ear in hot, humid and dusty areas, retrospective study was done to detect the potassium hydroxide (KOH) mount positive in ear discharge of chronic otitis media and treat these patients.

Methods: This was a retrospective study based on Bapuji Hospital records between 1 January 2018 to 26 July 2019 attached to the teaching college JJM Medical College, Davangere. Patients of either sex between age group 18 months to 87 years who diagnosed with chronic otitis media and given ear discharge sample for bacterial culture and KOH mount which is taken by a single surgeon. Collected bacterial culture reports and KOH mount reports and calculated all positive reports of KOH mount reports and treated accordingly and all reports were analysed statistically.  

Results: We found that 15.8% KOH rate positive with 9.8-21.8% probable range for KOH positivity 95% CI which will impact in modification of treatment in chronic otitis media and were effectively treated with antibiotic and antifungal ear drops and 8 patients were required oral antibiotics as well.

Conclusions: We conclude that in patients with COM, send ear discharge for both culture and sensitivity and KOH mount and it should be routine and always consider combined therapy i.e., antibiotic and antifungal drugs.


Chronic otitis media, KOH mount, Combined therapy, Prevalence

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