Dr Sonia's ENT

ENT Specialist, Head & Neck Surgeon,Bangalore
Dr Sonia Suprabha Venugopal

ENT Health Articles

Ear Wax

Posted on June 21, 2010 at 5:57 PM

By Dr Sonia Suprabha Venugopal, ENT Specialist Bangalore

What is ear wax?

Ear wax or cerumen as it is medically called is produced by small glands in the outer 1/3 rd of the ear canal. The ear wax traps particles and protects the ear.


Why does ear wax accumulate?

Ear wax is normally pushed to the outside by normal mechanisms of the body.

Common causes of ear wax accumulation include:

  • Use of ear buds[ Q tips]: this is the most common cause of ear wax problem: in an attempt to clean the ear, wax is pushed in deep into the ear canal and accumulates.
  • Use of pins/ match sticks/rolled napkin corners etc to itch ear/'clean' ears
  • Using ear plugs
  • Hearing aid users
  • Structural variations in ear canal producing narrow/collapsed outer ear canal
  • Swellings in outer ear canal- eg an osteoma

You may be having ear wax accumulation if

You have used ear buds/other objects in your ear: see Below picture of ear wax cast removed from patient who used ear buds on a regular basis


You use ear plugs

You have narrow ear canals

Bony swellings in ear canal

What are the symptoms of ear wax accumulation?

  • Ear Blockage
  • Ear Fullness
  • Ear Pain
  • Ear Discomfort
  • Ear Itching
  • Hearing loss
  • Dizziness
  • Tinnitus[sounds in ear]

What should I do for ear wax?

Prevention is better- DO NOT insert objects into your ear canal.

Visit an ENT specialist in your locality if you have any of the symptoms listed above.The ENT specialist will examine your ears with a headlight,otoscope or endoscope [see picture]and diagnose your condition accurately.

How is ear wax treated?

Wax may sometimes need to be softened with medications before it is removed

ENT specialists use various methods to remove wax

  • Syringing
  • Suction cleaning under microscope[see picture]
  • Microforceps removal
  • Removal with ear probes or scoops

Dr Sonia Suprabha Venugopal


Consultant ENT & Head & Neck Surgery

Location: BANGALORE:Sadashivnagar,Sahakaranagar,RT Nagar,Hebbal




ENT Specialist Bangalore

Categories: Ear , General