Otalgia or ear pain is a common reason for primary care consultation. Differentiating primary from secondary otalgia based on a thorough clinical history, physical examination, and evaluation, is crucial in the overall management of patients presenting with ear pain. Primary otalgia is often caused by ear infections, such as otitis media and chronic suppurative otitis media; while secondary or referred otalgia may be due to other causes external to the ear structures. Treatment of primary otalgia is influenced by various factors such as age and structural abnormalities. A suspicion for a secondary cause should prompt a timely referral to a specialist.
This e-learning module aims to differentiate primary from secondary otalgia and discuss its diagnostic and management approach.
Upon completion of the educational activity, participants should be able to:
Keywords: otalgia, ear pain, primary otalgia, secondary otalgia, referred otalgia, ear infections, otitis media, chronic suppurative otitis media