Acute otitis externa: management by GPs in North Queensland

Cheffins, Tracy, Heal, Clare, Rudolphy, Steven, Evans, Rebecca, and Veitch, Craig (2009) Acute otitis externa: management by GPs in North Queensland. Australian Family Physician, 38 (4). pp. 262-266.

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Background: Acute otitis externa (AOE) is a common condition in North Queensland. Clinical guidelines exist for the management of this condition. This study explores the pattern of causative pathogens and management of AOE by general practitioners in North Queensland.

Methods: Eight general practices in three regional cities of North Queensland participated in the study. The three components were: a retrospective case audit of AOE management, a survey of GPs’ self reported usual management, and collection of clinical data and microbiological specimens from new cases.

Results: Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the most common causative pathogen in all regions, GPs correctly identified the most common pathogens, there was variation in the use of oral antibiotics between regions (15.8–36.6%), ear syringing is commonly used in managing AOE (51.3%), and most patients (68.9%) required only one GP appointment.

Discussion: General practitioners have good knowledge of the causative pathogens for AOE in their region. While clinical guidelines are generally followed, there is some variation in the prescription of oral antibiotics and use of ear syringing in managing this condition.

Item ID: 8735
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0300-8495
Keywords: acute otitis externa
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Copyright to Australian Family Physician. Reproduced with permission. Permission to reproduce must be sought from the publisher, The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners:

Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2010 04:32
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111717 Primary Health Care @ 50%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1103 Clinical Sciences > 110399 Clinical Sciences not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920204 Evaluation of Health Outcomes @ 100%
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