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Diet & Chronic Earache
(Otitis Media)



Research Menu Page ||| Last update 11/23/2013

Listed in reverse date order:
Wasowka 1998 The way of nutrition and frequency of otitis media in hospitalized infants and 3-year-old children.
Nsouli 1994 Role of Food Allergy in Serous Otitis Media.
Duncan 1993 Exclusive breast-feeding for at least 4 months protects against otitis media.
Hagerman 1992    Recurrent otitis media in the fragile X syndrome.
Manning 1992 Incidence of otitis media in vitamin A-deficient guinea pigs.
Hurst 1990 Allergy management of refractory serous otitis media.
Hagerman 1987 An association between recurrent otitis media in infancy and later hyperactivity.
Angarano 1988 Diseases of the pinna.
Heiner 1984 Respiratory diseases and food allergy.
Wilson 1983 Recurrent acute otitis media in infants--role of immune complexes acquired in utero.



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  1. Diseases of the pinna. Angarano DW, Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 1988 Jul;18(4):869-84
    "... A variety of diagnostic tests, including hematology, serum biochemical profiles, urinalysis, serology, intradermal skin testing, hypoallergenic diet trials, histopathology, and direct immunofluorescence, may be necessary in some cases before a definitive diagnosis is reached. ... All too frequently, the chronic otitis externa is the result of a hypersensitivity (either inhalant or food) that has been overlooked in the attempt to treat the subsequent infectious otitis. Thus, in animals with recurrent otitis externa, every attempt should be made to identify and treat the underlying etiology."
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  2. Exclusive breast-feeding for at least 4 months protects against otitis media, Duncan B et al., Pediatrics 1993 May;91(5):867-72
    1013 infants were followed for their entire first year. "Infants exclusively breast-fed for 4 or more months had half the mean number of acute otitis media episodes as did those not breastfed at all and 40% less than those infants whose diets were supplemented with other foods prior to 4 months. The recurrent otitis media rate in infants exclusively breast-fed for 6 months or more was 10% and was 20.5% in those infants who breast-fed for less than 4 months. This protection was independent of the risk factors considered. CONCLUSION. These findings suggest that exclusive breast-feeding of 4 or more months protected infants from single and recurrent episodes of otitis media."

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  3. An association between recurrent otitis media in infancy and later hyperactivity. Hagerman RJ, Falkenstein AR, Clin Pediatr (Phila) 1987 May;26(5):253-7
    "An association between the frequency of otitis media in early childhood and later hyperactivity is reported in this study. ... Ninety-four percent of children medicated for hyperactivity had three or more otitis infections, and 69 percent had greater than 10 infections..."

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  4. Recurrent otitis media in the fragile X syndrome. Hagerman RJ, Altshul-Stark D, McBogg P, Am J Dis Child 1987 Feb;141(2):184-7
    "...Males with fra(X) [fragile X syndrome, a genetic disorder] are at high risk for recurrent ear disease, which may exacerbate the cognitive, language, and behavior problems that exist in this syndrome. "
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  5. Respiratory diseases and food allergy. Heiner DC, Ann Allergy 1984 Dec;53(6 Pt 2):657-64
    "Both upper and lower respiratory tracts can be affected by food allergy. Manifestations in either may be exclusively due to food allergy (common in infants) or may result from the combined effects of food allergy plus another defect ... or a concomitant inhalant allergy. Chronic rhinitis is the most common respiratory tract manifestation of food allergy... Recurrent serous otitis media may be solely or partially due to food allergy. Large tonsillar and adenoid tissues, sometimes with upper airway obstruction, may be caused, or aggravated by, food allergies. Lower respiratory tract disease manifested by chronic coughing, wheezing, pulmonary infiltrates, or alveolar bleeding may also occur. ... Food allergy should be considered when there is a history of prior intolerance to a food in childhood or of symptoms beginning soon after a particular food was introduced into the diet. It is an important consideration in patients who have chronic respiratory tract disease which does not respond adequately to the usual therapeutic measures and is otherwise unexplained."
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  6. Allergy management of refractory serous otitis media, Hurst DS, Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg, 1990 Jun;102(6):664-9
    "20 patients classified as having otitis media with effusion (OME) refractory to all previous medical and surgical therapy were entered into a prospective study to see if classic allergy techniques could diagnose and treat otherwise unresolved effusion and persistent hearing loss ... Among those choosing allergy immunotherapy, 65% maintained normal hearing, normal tympanograms, and the elimination of recurrent infections for three years. The remaining 35% resolved on appropriate food elimination diets. None of the control's symptoms resolved. "
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  7. Incidence of otitis media in vitamin A-deficient guinea pigs. Manning SC, Wright CG, Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 1992 Nov;107(5):701-6
    "After observing an association between vitamin A deficiency and otitis media among children in Micronesia, we sought to develop an animal model for vitamin A-deficiency-induced otitis media. ... None of the 15 controls demonstrated middle ear abnormalities. In the experimental group, 77% of temporal bones showed middle ear pathology consisting of either of subepithelial edema (27%) or frank otitis media (50%). ..."
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  8. Role of Food Allergy in Serous Otitis Media., Nsouli TM, Nsouli SM, Linde RE, O'Mara F, Scanlon RT, Bellanti JA. Annals of Allergy 1994 Sep;73(3):215-9
    There was a significant association between food allergy and repeated earaches (recurrent serous otitis media) in 81/104 patients (78%). "The elimination diet led to a significant amelioration of serous otitis media in 70/81 (86%) patients as assessed by clinical evaluation and tympanometry. The challenge diet with the suspected offending food(s) provoked a recurrence of serous otitis media in 66/70 patients (94%). CONCLUSIONS. The possibility of food allergy should be considered in all pediatric patients with recurrent serous otitis media and a diligent search for the putative food allergen made for proper diagnostic and therapeutic intervention."
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  9. The way of nutrition and frequency of otitis media in hospitalized infants and 3-year-old children, Wasowka-Krolikowska K, Dynowski J, Godzisz J, Pol Merkuriusz Lek, 1998 Dec;5(30):333-4
    The frequency of hospitilization of infants and children for otitis media at the Clinic of Childrens Diseases of the Medical University of Lodz decreased from 22.6% in 1975 to 4.2% hospitalized in 1995. "It was caused mainly by the change of a way of nutrition from artificial to natural and easy accessibility diets. It shows an allergic process as a probable source of otitis media in children."
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  10. Recurrent acute otitis media in infants--role of immune complexes acquired in utero. Wilson WH, Laryngoscope 1983 Apr;93(4):418-21
    "Ten infants experiencing recurring episodes of acute otitis media with associated otitis media with effusion while on human breast milk afford a study of the role of possible immune complexes acquired in utero through the mother's allergic diathesis. ... Challenge feeding tests determined the mothers' hypersensitivities. Those infants breast fed by mothers exhibiting positive challenges to specific foods, manifest allergic responses themselves following the first breast feeding after the mothers' challenge. A cessation of episodes ... occurred in five ... as foods proven to be offenders were eliminated from the mother's and child's diet..."
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