What are the side-effects of the treatments of Ear Wax?

No treatment of ear wax is completely ‘risk-free’ and some side-effects of the different treatments are:

Ear drops

  • can cause the ear wax to expand and further increase ear blockage.
  • occasionally they can cause discomfort and trigger an infection.
  • if not used at room temperature they can cause short-term dizziness.
  • can cause an allergic reaction if you have an allergy to any of the ingredients.

Ear syringing / Ear irrigation

  • Ear wax being further impacted into the ear canal by the water being pumped into the ear.
  • Damage and trauma to the ear canal and eardrum (including perforation).
  • Hearing loss (temporary or permanent) and tinnitus (ringing type noise inside the ear) or worsening of it if already experienced. This is rare.
  • Faintness, dizziness or vertigo if the water is not at body temperature. This is due to the ‘caloric’ effect and is normally only short lasting.
  • An external ear canal infection or irritation. This may be more likely in people who have a predisposition to eczema or have a history of ear infections (e.g. otitis externa).
  • Infection of the bone around the external ear canal. This is rare but can be very serious. Its hallmark is persistent pain which is worse at night. It is more likely to occur in the elderly.
  • If self-administered, there is no clinical inspection of the outer ear and ear canal before or after the procedure to check for any contraindications and complications.

Microscopic ear wax removal

  • Damage and trauma to the ear canal and ear drum (including perforation).
  • If microsuction is being performed a loud noise can be generated in the ear canal due to the suction. In some people this can cause hearing loss (temporary or permanent) and tinnitus (ringing type noise inside the ear) or worsening of it if already experienced. This is rare.
  • Microsuction ‘cools’ the temperature inside the ear canal which can lead to faintness, dizziness or vertigo. This is due to the ‘caloric’ effect and is normally short lasting.

Endoscopic ear wax removal

  • Damage and trauma to the ear canal and ear drum (including perforation).
  • If E-suction™ is being performed a loud noise can be generated in the ear canal due to the suction. In some people this can cause hearing loss (temporary or permanent) and tinnitus (ringing type noise inside the ear) or worsening of it if already experienced. This is rare.
  • E-suction™ ‘cools’ the temperature inside the ear canal which can lead to faintness, dizziness or vertigo. This is due to the ‘caloric’ effect and is normally short lasting.