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SURE I HEAR

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Surgery for the treatment of glue ear in Indigenous Australian children. (CIA O'Leary, Morris, Kong, Thornton, Smith-Vaughan).

The Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) has already invested many millions of dollars to provide more ear surgery to Indigenous children. Whether this improves outcomes for children with otitis media (OM) is not clear.

SURE I HEAR is a multi-centred, randomized trial to compare the outcomes of two surgical interventions on chronic otitis media in Indigenous children living in remote communities of Australia.

The rationale for this first RCT is based on the theory that adenoid infection from the densely colonised nasopharynx leads to OM infection via the Eustachian tube. There are currently no biological data on the adenoids of Indigenous children with otitis media with effusion (OME), and little data on middle ear fluid.

Children with OME and living in remote areas of Australia will be randomised to one of three groups:

1. adenoidectomy with ventilation tubes (VTA)

2. adenoidectomy with myringotomy (MA)

3. medical treatment as clinically indicated

The primary outcome is expected to be a reduction in the prevalence of otitis media with effusion (OME) / recurrent Acute Otitis Media (rAOM). Secondary outcomes are expected to be a reduction in hearing impairment and reduction in aural discharge.

For researchers

Otitis Media (OM), sometimes known as glue ear or runny ears…

For health practitioners

Otitis Media (OM), sometimes known as glue ear or runny ears…

For families and communities

Many Indigenous children, and almost all Indigenous children living in remote communities...