Wait and see approach to treating children's ear infections

It can be one of the more frustrating and distressing experiences for parents; their child screaming in the night because of a painful infected middle ear infection or otitis media. In the past, children would immediately be prescribed an antibiotic to destroy the bacteria contributing to their pain and inflammation.

However, a new study, published in the September 13, 2006 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reveals children whose parents take a “wait-and-see” approach to treating childhood ear infections get better at the same rate as children whose parents administer antibiotics.

  • Dr. David Spiro, Head of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital and Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine and of Pediatrics, Oregon Health and Science University School of Medicine in Portland, Oregon and lead author of the study.


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