Eustachian Tube Compliance in Cleft Palate—A Preliminary Study

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Abstract

With the use of the tubal compliance test and the forced response test (FRT), the compliance and ventilatory functions of the eustachian tube (ET) were examined in 19 children with otitis media with effusion (OME) and cleft palate, in 31 children with OME but without cleft palate, and in 19 individuals with traumatic perforation of the eardrum without history of other otological disease (controls). The tubal compliance results in the group with both cleft palate and OME were significantly higher than the results obtained with the controls, but did not differ significantly from the results obtained with the patients with OME but without cleft palate; this indicated that the ETs of those patients with OME and cleft palate, and the ETs of those patients with OME but without cleft palate, appeared to be more collapsible than the ETs of normal subjects. It was speculated that such an aerodynamic property of the ET observed in the group with OME and cleft palate and in the group with OME but without cleft palate may be due mainly to possible inflammatory condition of the tubal mucosa rather than to abnormal anatomy or to an abnormal physical property of the framework (such as cartilage) of the ET.

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