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Redmond Regional Medical Center

Symptoms of Middle Ear Infection

Ear infections frequently develop during or shortly after another infection, such as a cold or sore throat. They may also happen during nasal allergy symptoms.

The Ear
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Symptoms include:

  • Ear pain (Note: Children who can talk may tell you that their ear hurts. Babies may tug or rub at the ear or face or become irritable.)
  • Fever
  • Hearing loss, which resolves with appropriate treatment
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Irritability
  • Decreased appetite or difficulty feeding
  • Drainage from the ear (This may appear as blood, clearish fluid, pus, or as a dry crust on the outer portion of the ear after sleeping.)
  • Difficulty with balance, frequent falling, sensations of lightheadedness
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Chills

Some children with ear infection, particularly chronic otitis, have no symptoms. Their condition may be discovered on examination for some other problem.

Revision Information

  • Acute otitis media. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated August 17, 2015. Accessed September 21, 2015.

  • Ear infections in children. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders website. Available at: Published March 2013. Accessed September 21, 2015.

  • Middle ear infections. American Academy of Pediatrics Healthy Children website. Available at: Updated August 20, 2015. Accessed September 21, 2015.

The health information in this Health Library is provided by a third party. Redmond Regional Medical Center does not in any way create the content of this information. It is provided solely for informational purposes. It does not constitute medical advice and is not intended to be a substitute for proper medical care provided by a physician. Always consult with your doctor for appropriate examinations, treatment, testing, and care recommendations. Do not rely on information on this site as a tool for self-diagnosis. If you have a medical emergency, call 911.