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What does a mastoidectomy involve?

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Posted on Wed, 16 May 2018
Question: What does a mastoidectomy involve? What type of care is required before and after such a procedure?
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Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
there are different types of procedures

Detailed Answer:
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

The mastoid bone, along with 3 other bones, form/make up the temporal bone.

There are different types of procedures that can be done on the mastoid bone. From a simple procedure called simple mastoidectomy to a radical mastoidectomy. There is also a modified radical mastoidectomy.

Some specialist may also mention a canal wall up mastoidectomy and a canal wall down mastoidectomy

The procedures vary according to what is done.

In a simple mastoidectomy, the surgeon would open the mastoid bone and remove any infected or damaged areas.


With a radical and modified radical mastoidectomy, there may be some hearing loss. With a radical mastoidectomy , the ear drum is removed along with the mastoid, there may also be changes to the other parts of the middle ear as well.

Modified mastoidectomy is less severe but hearing loss can still occur in some persons.

The procedure is done under general anesthesia, there is no particular pre op required by the patient.
Post operatively--(1) the affected ear needs to be kept dry when bathing by possibly covering it with a cup or a petroleum covered cotton ball to the ear

(2) the packing that is placed in the ear canal is removed 1 to 2 weeks after surgery, topical antibiotics would sometimes then be started.
Oral antibiotics may have been given prior to that.

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Michelle Gibson James

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 16811 Questions

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What does a mastoidectomy involve?

Brief Answer: there are different types of procedures Detailed Answer: HI, thanks for using healthcare magic The mastoid bone, along with 3 other bones, form/make up the temporal bone. There are different types of procedures that can be done on the mastoid bone. From a simple procedure called simple mastoidectomy to a radical mastoidectomy. There is also a modified radical mastoidectomy. Some specialist may also mention a canal wall up mastoidectomy and a canal wall down mastoidectomy The procedures vary according to what is done. In a simple mastoidectomy, the surgeon would open the mastoid bone and remove any infected or damaged areas. With a radical and modified radical mastoidectomy, there may be some hearing loss. With a radical mastoidectomy , the ear drum is removed along with the mastoid, there may also be changes to the other parts of the middle ear as well. Modified mastoidectomy is less severe but hearing loss can still occur in some persons. The procedure is done under general anesthesia, there is no particular pre op required by the patient. Post operatively--(1) the affected ear needs to be kept dry when bathing by possibly covering it with a cup or a petroleum covered cotton ball to the ear (2) the packing that is placed in the ear canal is removed 1 to 2 weeks after surgery, topical antibiotics would sometimes then be started. Oral antibiotics may have been given prior to that. I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions