The Journal of International
Advanced Otology
Case Report

Bilateral Nontuberculous Mycobacterial Otitis Media: A Case Report


Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Toho University Omori Medical Center, Tokyo, Japan


Department of Otorhinolaryngology, The Jikei University, School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan

J Int Adv Otol 2024; 20: 81-84
DOI: 10.5152/iao.2024.231187
Read: 78 Downloads: 38 Published: 01 February 2024

Established treatment strategies for nontuberculous mycobacterial (NTM) infections are currently lacking, and whether surgical treatment should be applied in combination with antibiotic therapy remains debatable. Here, we report a case of bilateral otitis media caused by Mycobacterium abscessusa, a highly antibiotic-resistant bacterium. Many reported cases of NTM otitis media are unilateral, in which hearing of the contralateral ear is preserved. In the present case, strategies to improve hearing outcomes were considered, as both ears were affected. A 27-year-old woman presented with bilateral otorrhea that had lasted for the past 9 months. Bacterial culture showed M. abscessus in both ears. Based on drug sensitivity tests, clarithromycin, amikacin, and imipenem were administered. Three days after treatment initiation, diseased tissues were removed from the right middle ear, which had impaired hearing. On day 38, otorrhea stopped in both ears, and the hearing improved. Computed tomography revealed air in both middle ears. No apparent recurrence was detected. Under the same antibiotic therapy, resolution of diseased tissues and improvement in hearing were similar between the ears with and without surgery, suggesting that surgery is not always necessary. This finding may be incorporated into the treatment guidelines for NTM infections in the future.

Cite this article as: Kajiwara R, Yamamoto K, Ohira S, Wada K. Bilateral nontuberculous mycobacterial otitis media: A case report. J Int Adv Otol. 2024;20(1):81-84

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