Int Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2014; 18(02): 204-209
DOI: 10.1055/s-0034-1366974
Update Article
Thieme Publicações Ltda Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Update on Middle Ear Barotrauma after Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy—Insights on Pathophysiology

Marco Antônio Rios Lima
1  Health Science School, Universidade de Brasília, Brasilia, Distrito Federal, Brazil
,
Luciano Farage
1  Health Science School, Universidade de Brasília, Brasilia, Distrito Federal, Brazil
,
Maria Cristina Lancia Cury
2  Department of Hyperbaric Medicine, Armed Force Hospital, Brasilia, Distrito Federal, Brazil
,
Fayez Bahamad Júnior
1  Health Science School, Universidade de Brasília, Brasilia, Distrito Federal, Brazil
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

27 August 2013

02 December 2013

Publication Date:
10 February 2014 (online)

  

Abstract

Introduction Middle ear barotrauma is the most common side effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Knowledge and understanding of its pathophysiology are crucial for an accurate diagnosis and proper decision making about treatment and prevention.

Objective Describe up-to-date information on pathophysiology of middle ear barotrauma after hyperbaric oxygen therapy considering the physiology of pressure variation of the middle ear.

Data Synthesis Middle ear barotrauma occurs especially during the compression phase of hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The hyperoxic environment in hyperbaric oxygen therapy leads to ventilatory dysfunction of the eustachian tube, especially in monoplace chambers, where the patients are pressurized with 100% O2, favoring middle ear barotrauma.

Conclusion The eustachian tube, the tympanic cavity, and mastoid work together in a neural controlled feedback system in which various mechanisms concur for middle ear pressure regulation.