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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

8 month old, persistant ear infection, enlarged adenoids, advice please!

(9 Posts)
yawningbear Wed 19-Oct-11 19:59:47

DS has been snuffly from birth, and he has had a bad cough for the last 3 months. He was eventually given two courses of antibiotics which cleared up a chest infection but he still has an ear infection. GP thinks he had enlarged adenoids, and has said it is likely his middle ear is not draining properly hence the ear infection not clearing. She has advised to continue with pain relief for him and has indicated that his hearing/speech may be affected in the longer term and did not seem sure as to when the ear infection should clear up. Have now done some research and it sounds like gromits might help. Just wondered if anyone has any idea as to what age they can be fitted or of anything else that could help. He is obviously in lots of pain at times, is waking frequently throughout the night and I am getting desperate for him to be well again! TIA

beautifulgirls Wed 19-Oct-11 20:04:14

I would ask the GP for an urgent referral to see an ENT about this. They will be able to assess how things are fully and decide what is going to be the best thing to do to help him.

DeWe Wed 19-Oct-11 21:33:37

Ds started ear infections at about 3 months and had them excluding a couple of months over the summer until he was 20 months when he had grommets put in.

He was fairly young to have grommets (judging by health care people's reactions) but it definitely worked for him. His speech wasn't dramatically effected, pronunciation rather than vocabulary.

But grommet do carry their own problems. Last winter his first set of grommets were out and his ear drums burst 8 times. They'd rarely burst before, and grommets may have made the ear drum weaker and more likely to burst. He had grommets again this spring. His hearing has been permanently effected do to the scarring from the grommets and the bursting.

Grommets cause some scarring on the ear drum, so they don't do it easily. They don't work for all children, some children do continue having ear infections afterwards; they can't really predict which ones will either. It's not necessarily the right thing for your ds.

I agree with beautifulgirls in that you need to ask for a referral to ENT. If the GP has other things to try first they may well not want to refer you until you've tried them. If nothing else you then go to ENT to be told go away and try the other things. They may want to remove the adenoids too.

yawningbear Thu 20-Oct-11 17:29:58

Thankyou both for your replies, I appreciate it. I am taking DS to the Gp's next week so will ask for ENT referral then. Your poor DS DeWe, it sounds awful and so sad that his hearing has been permanently effected. It does all sounds very familiar and kind of what the GP seemed to be prediciting. Was there anything else that helped with the ear infections prior to having the grommets fitted at 20 months? I am guessing not too much or you wouldn't have had to go down that route? It just seems that DS has been having pain relief on a daily basis for weeks now and that the GP seemed to indicate that it may well be ongoing and that this was fine. I am just wondering if this was the same for your DS? I totally appreciate from what you are saying that having grommets fitted may not necessarily be the answer for DS. Thanks again for your reply.

margoandjerry Thu 20-Oct-11 17:37:06

My son, now 2, had 15 sets of antibiotics in the space of 9 months for recurrent ear infections. I had to fight bloody hard for grommets - tears at the hospital, shouting matches with the consultant etc because he didn't fit their criteria for the op. I won and he had the grommets a few months ago at 22 months and he's been fine since although cold season has yet to start properly. His hearing was definitely affected (on and off - sometimes the hearing tests were clear - sometimes he had very little hearing) and as a result his speech was delayed and is still a bit off but he's catching up.

jenpetronus Thu 20-Oct-11 17:40:19

We were in a similar position - DS2 is now 3 & he had repeated ear infections since birth - usually the eardrum burst too, which relieved the pressure but was pretty grim. Our GP recommended us to the local ear specialist at the hospital (we're in France, so not ENT exactly) she was incredibly thorough testing him etc, but as there was no sign at all of infection (this was back in June) she said there was no point operating uneccessarily (they always do grommit insertion and remove the adenoids at the same time here) and to see how he got in this winter with infections etc - now it may be just coincidence, but he's only had one ear infection since he went back to school in September, but I have been giving him a pro-biotic supplement and he has a good diet generally, I also have tried to reduce his dairy intake a bit as I've read this can make infections worse. I just figured it couldn't hurt to increase his immune system as much as possible, so we'll see how it goes.
I do feel for you thought, it's ear infections are horrible, particularly in babies.

jenpetronus Thu 20-Oct-11 17:42:38

Sorry, I meant to say too, our GP was quite keen for grommits - as his ear drum usually bursts withthe infection, that can lead to scarring apparantly, which then can lead to hearing loss - important in any DC, but as DS is learning in 2 languages she was even more keen to avoid it...

jqH Fri 21-Oct-11 13:29:12

Having gone through most of the above - chronic ear infections from 8 weeks, almost fortnightly antibiotics (until I realised that it didn't seem to make much difference), grommets in, grommets out (half the time they couldn't even see through the gunk to confirm if they had fallen out), adenoids out ..

He is now 10 and for probably 3 years we have been free of the infection ... I remember that he was scheduled to have his first set of grommets when he was about 8 mths, had the pre-med, then the surgeon came round and said did we realise that this wasn't necessarily going to cure the problem. so we left and then ended up having them when we was about 15 mths....

yawningbear Sat 22-Oct-11 07:31:45

Thanks for all the replies, so sorry to hear all these stories though, your poor LO's, what a nightmare. It hasn't filled me with much hope to be honest and am now dreading the winter even more! Interesting about the dairy jenpetrous, will look into it. I am still not sure if there is anything else I can do just now other than try and get a referral to ENT. Am having a nightmare with his sleep too, he is waking up really frequently and have resorted to feeding him back to sleep and co-sleeping, now I can't tell if it is his ears causing him to wake or just bad habits that we have fallen into. Also can I ask what you did in respect to flying? We would usually take a short haul flight every few weeks to visit family and are due to fly next weekend but am aware that this probably isn't viable if he still has an infection. Will speak to the GP obviously but am just wondering what others experiences were particulary if the infections were pretty much constant. Thanks again for all the replies, has been really helpful to read of others experiences.

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