B-ENT

A special case of ear barotrauma caused by hyperbaric oxygen therapy

1.

Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, University Hospital Leuven, Leuven, Belgium

2.

Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, AZ St Jan Bruges hospital, Bruges, Belgium.

B-ENT 2019; 15: 65-69
Read: 800 Downloads: 587 Published: 28 January 2020

A special case of ear barotrauma caused by hyperbaric oxygen therapy The problem: A 52-year-old male with prior ear surgery on the right side presented at our department for the first time with a crushing pain behind his right ear, unsteady gait, blurry vision, and confusion. These symptoms occurred in our hospital, during the last 10 min of a hyperbaric oxygen therapy session for chronic posttraumatic tinnitus. Methodology: Audiometry and a CT scan of the brain were performed. Results: The CT scan showed a pneumocephalus, with a dehiscent tegmen as the port of air entry. Conclusions: We recommend careful consideration of the risks of hyperbaric oxygen therapy before treating patients with a history of ear surgery. This is particularly important in cases of chronic tinnitus, because there is currently no definitive evidence of treatment efficacy.

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EISSN 2684-4907