Last Updated on Apr 04, 2019

How do you Diagnose Cholesteatoma?

The doctor will first take a detailed medical history and do a complete physical checkup to know about your general health. The following tests are then performed:

  • Examination of ear: The doctor will look inside your ear with an otoscope to check the condition of the ear drum
  • Audiometry: This test is performed to check your hearing loss
  • Tympanometry: This is a test to check the functioning of the middle ear
  • Balance tests: These tests check your inner ears where the balance apparatus is located
  • Computerized Tomography (CT) scan of the mastoid bone and inner ears
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). This test is done if brain involvement is suspected.

How can you Treat Cholesteatoma?

  • The initial treatment involves cleaning of the ear, ear drops and antibiotics to control ear infection
  • Surgery: This is the only method for removing a cholesteatoma. An incision is made in the back of the ear through the mastoid bone or inside the ear canal to remove the cholesteatoma
  • Tympanoplasty: This procedure involves reconstruction of the middle ear to repair the damage to the eardrum or the ear ossicles.

How to Prevent Cholesteatoma?

Regular follow-ups after surgery are required to prevent cholesteatoma recurrence. Cholesteatomas can recur if they are not removed completely. Middle ear infections, chronic infections, allergies, injuries and sinus infections should be treated promptly so that the tympanic membrane and the Eustachian tubes are not affected. A cholesteatoma which is present since birth is usually detected later on in childhood and cannot be prevented.

Treating Ear Infections Promptly May Help Prevent Cholesteatomas (Ear Disease)


  1. US department of health and human services- National institute of Health - Cholesteatoma - (
  2. How Long is Long Enough to Follow up Children After Cholesteatoma Surgery? - (
  3. An overview of chronic ear infections & cholesteatoma - (
  4. Types of Vestibular Disorders- cholesteatoma - (
  5. Chronic Otitis Media, Cholesteatoma and Mastoiditis - (
  6. What is a Cholesteatoma? - (

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