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However, when the surgical placement of ear tubes becomes necessary in an adult, it is often to treat the same conditions which require their placement in children.

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The surgical placement of ear tubes is a relatively simple procedure that involves making a small hole in the eardrum with a scalpel or laser (technically called a myringotomy) and then inserting a synthetic tube.

The procedure is relatively simple and short, lasting only about 15 minutes.

Listen to the instructions carefully and call your doctor with any questions or concerns you have after leaving.

It is usually advised that you call the doctor if you have a fever, excessive bleeding, or drainage from your ear that is an abnormal color or has a foul odor.

For example, auditory tube dysfunction can often lead to ear infections, persistent fluid in the ears, or retracted ear drums.

Abnormalities in an adults ear anatomy, often present from birth, can contribute to the development of these conditions as well.

In adults, the tubes are often shaped like a "T" and are designed to stay in place for a longer period of time since growth of the auditory tube is not anticipated.

The placement of ventilation tubes seldom causes a lot of pain and any discomfort can usually be treated with the over-the-counter pain medication acetaminophen.

In small children, the tubes are often designed to fall out when the child has a growth spurt and their auditory tube naturally increases in diameter.

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