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Chronic otitis media (COM) commonly causes associated hearing loss. The authors performed a review of the literature, discussed challenges of restoring hearing in patients with COM and potential future work in reporting results both in terms of hearing outcomes and patient-reported outcomes. The paper discussed different hearing rehabilitation options for patients with COM, ranging from reconstructive middle ear surgery to auditory implants. It was highlighted that a number of patients often undergo multiple revision surgeries to manage their conductive hearing loss before being fitted with hearing devices. The authors advocated for the need for a tool to identify patients who will benefit from hearing devices earlier in the treatment pathway. For instance, utilising the Middle Ear Risk Index (MERI) to identify patients at higher risk of tympanoplasty failure. The authors also discussed different classifications for tympanomastoid surgeries and concluded that the SAMEO-ATO classification system best describes and classifies surgical interventions in such a heterogeneous group. Finally, the authors also discussed different COM health-related quality-of-life questionnaires. Further work to develop standardised tools to risk stratify patients and guide hearing rehabilitation options would be useful as it would allow prompt, cost-effective and reliable hearing outcomes.

Hearing Rehabilitation of Patients with Chronic Otitis Media: A Discussion of Current State of Knowledge and Research Priorities.
Backous D, Choi BY, Jaramillo R, et al.
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Wai Sum Cho

Queens Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK.

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