Meta-analysis of Pediatric Tympanoplasty

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To determine which preoperative conditions or surgical techniques may influence the success of tympanoplasty in the pediatric population.

Data Sources

A MEDLINE search of the English-language literature from 1966 to May 1997 was conducted using the search terms pediatric or child and tympanoplasty or myringoplasty.

Study Selection

Articles that provided age-specific data on tympanoplasty or myringoplasty were included. Of the original 651 studies retrieved, 30 were accepted for inclusion. The principal reason for exclusion was inability to separate adult and pediatric results in series that combined both patient populations.

Data Extraction

Success was defined as an intact tympanic membrane for the purpose of this review. Data were tabulated by consensus of 2 reviewers.

Data Synthesis

The effect of surgical technique, prior adenoidectomy, presence of active infection, size of perforation, status of the contralateral ear, age, and eustachian tube function on healing of the tympanic membrane after surgery was assessed. Only those studies providing data on a given parameter of interest could be included when comparing each variable. Weighted means were compared and subjected to sensitivity analysis. Simple linear regression analysis was used to assess the effect of age on outcome.


Greater success in healing of the tympanic membrane following tympanoplasty in children is seen with advancing age. None of the other parameters studied was shown to be a significant predictor of success. Guidelines for reporting results of tympanoplasty are presented.

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