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Ear Foreign Body Removal

Three Part Question

In [children with aural foreign bodies] which [method of removal] is [best]?

Clinical Scenario

A three year old boy presents to hospital having pushed the wheel of a toy car into his left ear. It is visible on auroscopy. Which method of removal is most most likely to meet with success?

Search Strategy

Medline 1966-09/04 using the OVID interface.
[exp Foreign bodies OR foreign] AND [exp Ear OR] AND [(]

Search Outcome

79 articles were found, but none directly addressed the question in this presentation. Many articles give individual case reports, while several others illustrate the variety of methods available. However, no comparisons are drawn.


There is no evidence in the current literature for choosing any particular method over another in the removal of foreign bodies from the ear, and many different techniques are applicable.

Clinical Bottom Line

No studies have been undertaken on comparing the different techniques to determine success. It is therefore advised that cases are treated individually.