Otitis media in children less than 12 weeks of age

T. R. Tetzlaff, C. Ashworth, J. D. Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Cases of otitis media in infants under 12 weeks of age were reviewed to delineate the frequency, clinical features, and etiologic agents involved. Tympanocentesis was performed in 42 infants, 0 to 5 weeks of age, and in 17, from 6 to 11 weeks of age. The most common symptoms were irritability/lethargy (69%), fever (52%), cough (36%), vomiting (21%), diarrhea (20%), tachypnea (20%), and anorexia (18%). Associated illnesses were present in 33 (54%) of the patients, the most common being pneumonia (9), bronchiolitis (7), meningitis (6), conjunctivitis (4), and omphalitis (4). No peripartum infections or severe perinatal problems were found. Common respiratory pathogens were the predominant etiologic organisms, but coliform organisms were identified in 18% of the infants under 6 weeks of age. Cultures were sterile or grew organisms of questionable pathogenicity ('nonpathogens') in 39% of specimens. Since the signs and symptoms of otitis media in children less than 12 weeks of age are nonspecific and frequently associated with other major illnesses, the physician caring for these infants needs to be more aware of this disease and the therapeutic problems it presents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)827-832
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 1977

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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