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Broken silicone earplugs: removal success using a small camera in a deployed environment
  1. William Todd Hammond1 and
  2. M W Gray2
  1. 1 US Army Medical Department, Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio, Texas, USA
  2. 2 Emergency Medicine, US Army Medical Department, Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio, Texas, USA
  1. Correspondence to Maj William Todd Hammond, US Army Medical Department, Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio, Texas, USA; william.t.hammond13.mil{at}army.mil

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A 41-year-old service member presented to primary care (Role I on an installation with Role II and Role III available, but without an Otolaryngology (ENT) service) with the complaint a silicone earplug had broken off in his right ear. Otoscopic examination of the right external auditory canal (EAC) revealed a foreign body (FB) consistent with a photo of the earplug. The primary care Physician Assistant attempted removal which was partially successful, and the visualised inferior aspect of the right tympanic membrane (TM) appeared intact. Further attempts to dislodge the FB were abandoned secondary to patient comfort.

The patient was given antibiotic ear drops and instructed to return in 48 hours. On return, a second removal attempt was partially successful but discontinued secondary to bleeding. The patient …

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Footnotes

  • Contributors Both authors contributed equally to the submission.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.