Safety of silver oxide-impregnated silastic tympanostomy tubes

R. A. Chole, R. E. Brummett, S. P. Tinling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Otorrhea occurs after the insertion of tympanostomy tubes in as many as 50% of ears. Although topical antibiotic solutions minimize otorrhea in the immediate postoperative period, recurrent otorrhea is sometimes a clinical problem. The antimicrobial effects of silver oxide when impregnated into a tympanostomy tube may decrease the incidence of recurrent otorrhea. This study demonstrates that silver oxide-impregnated silicone elastomer is well tolerated within the middle ear of gerbils when implanted for 1 year, and the tissue reaction is no more than silicon elastomer without silver oxide. When applied directly to the round window of guinea pigs, there was no evidence of ototoxicity of silver oxide as measured by electrocochleography (N-1 thresholds) and cytocochleography (hair cell counts). These animal studies indicate that silver oxide-impregnated silicone elastomeric tympanostomy tubes may be used safely in clinical trials to determine efficacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)722-724
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican Journal of Otology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 1995


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