Hersh S.P.,Hospital Queens
Annals of Long-Term Care | Year: 2010
Cerumen is an amalgam of secretions from the cerumenous and sebaceous glands that line the lateral aspect of the external ear canal, and shed epithelial remnants and occasional extraneous material that finds its way into the external auditory canal. Although present in all age groups, cerumen may become particularly problematic in the elderly population and those residing in LTC facilities; impacted cerumen may lead to both worsening of an existing hearing deficit and unexpected cognitive and behavioral irregularities. Cerumen provides a number of vital services that contribute to the overall health of the external ear, yet removal is often required to assure proper examination prior to planned hearing testing, and to help in hearing aid performance. A number of techniques may be utilized to remove cerumen, and preference should depend upon a caregiver's expertise, as well as a patient's tolerance and receptivity to the approach under consideration.