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Otorinolaringologia 2002 June;52(2):57-61

Copyright © 2009 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: Italian

Statistical investigation of a sample of 158 patients subjected to examination of Eustachian tube function as a preliminary test of suitability for the hyperbaric chamber

Parlapiano C., Maggio O., Martines E.

Dipartimento di Biotecnologie Mediche e Medicina Legale Sezione di Audiologia Università degli Studi di Palermo, Palermo


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Background. Good Eustachian tube function is of fundamental importance not only for sports people who engage in immersions or flights, but also for patients who have to undergo sessions in the hyperbaric chamber because they too are subjected to variations in pressure that may be responsible for the onset of barotraumatic otitis.
Methods. In order to assess tubal function the techniques adopted are those involving Pagnini’s impedance metre with closed tympanum, partially modified. Graphs were classified as normal or with slight, medium or severe tubal hypofunction.
Results. 197 tubal function tests were considered. These evidenced 40.10% cases of normal function while there was hypofunction in 59.90%, classified as slight in 41.62%, medium in 10.16% and severe in 8.12% of cases. In the group of subjects with hypofunction, bilateral tubal hypofunction was observed in 61.02% of cases.
Conclusions. Subjects with bilaterally normal tubal function and those with slight tubal hypofunction were considered suitable for admission to the hyperbaric chamber. Those with slight hypofunction were advised to use a nasal vasoconstrictor 10 min before the session in the chamber.

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