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Should I go to the ER for redness and tenderness with scabbing in outer ear?

Aug 2013
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Answered by

ENT Specialist
Practicing since : 1996
Answered : 1025 Questions
I have a 2 day history of swelling, redness, tenderness of my outer ear and it appears there is a scrape or scratch? with scabbing. It is tender to touch and to push on the tragus but not to pull on the earlobe. My concern is that I have a tendency to infection. Can I wait until morning to go to the Doctor or should I go to the ER?
Posted Wed, 15 Jan 2014 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Sriram Nathan 38 minutes later
Brief Answer: infection is likely Detailed Answer: hello and welcome to health care magic, I am Dr Sriram Nathan an ENT surgeon and I have gone through your snaps and although the images are not very clear, it is enough for me to say that you might have an infection of the skin covering the pinna or the ear. In most of the cases the infection will subside in a couple of days and all you have to do is make sure that you follows these instructions: -do not meddle or touch the area -avoid head bath for a couple of days -if you have a local antiseptic ointment you can apply the same without rubbing much -if you are diabetic then you must keep your sugars under control. This is especially important if you have a tendency of infection -If you have pain or if the redness increase then you can take a pain killer like paracetamol and an antibiotic like amox-clav in consultation with your doctor. -keep the ear dry and clean and do not use ear buds You can wait till morning and also for a couple of days with the above instructions. However if the pain does increase then you must consult an ENT doctor as soon as possible. Hope this helps If you have any more doubts I will be happy to help regards Dr Sriram Nathan
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