Inner Ear Infections (Labyrinthitis)

  • Nicholas A. DewyerEmail author
  • Ruwan Kiringoda
  • Michael J. McKennaEmail author


Infection of the inner ear, or labyrinthitis, can be caused by a variety of pathogens. The diagnosis is usually made based on the clinical findings of sensorineural hearing loss and/or vertigo in the setting of an ongoing infection, particularly otitis media or meningitis. It should be determined whether the causative agent is bacterial or viral so that appropriate treatment may be administered. The inner ear is exquisitely sensitive to insults such as infection, and in many cases the patient is left with permanent sensorineural hearing loss and vestibular dysfunction following an inner ear infection. Acute suppurative labyrinthitis can progress to intracranial infectious complications and requires prompt treatment.


Labyrinthitis Inner ear Infection Ear Diagnosis Treatment Viral Bacterial Facial paralysis 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Otology and LaryngologyHarvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of OtolaryngologyMassachusetts Eye and Ear/Massachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  3. 3.Palo Alto Medical FoundationPalo AltoUSA

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