Surgery for Treating Otitis Media in Australian Indigenous Children

Project Details

Otitis Media is exceedingly prevalent in Australian Indigenous children, and causes a hearing loss that lasts throughout childhood and often into adult life.  The hearing loss hinders learning and educational opportunities, and may have life-long impacts. The long term outcomes of the results of various treatments has been debated but never documented.

This surgical sub-study 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. This project seeks to inform evidence-based guidelines for the best surgical intervention for Indigenous children with OME living in rural and remote communities.

The outcome measures will be a reduction in the prevalence of OME/AOM, hearing impairment, aural discharge/perforation, and also the effect of treatment on nasal colonisation with pathogenic bacteria. Reducing the high burden of otitis media and hearing loss will improve the long-term educational and social prospects of young Australians growing up in remote communities.

Photo courtesy of The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, photographer Leo FarrellStephen O'Leary & Child


Professor Stephen O'Leary, Principle Investigator

Katie Davis, Clinical Trial Coordinator



Research Outcomes

Deriving accurate microbiota profiles from human samples with low bacterial content through post-sequencing processing of Illumina MiSeq data by Jake Jervis-Bardy, LexE.X. Leong, Shashikanth Marri, ReneeJ Smith, JocelynM Choo, HeidiC Smith-Vaughan, Elizabeth Nosworthy, et al. Microbiome 2015, 3:19

Research Group

Indigenous Ear Health

Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre


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