Aerotitis, also known as barotitis or aerotitis media, is a medical condition that occurs when there is an imbalance in the pressure between the middle ear and the environment. This can occur during air travel, scuba diving, or other activities that involve a rapid change in altitude or pressure.
When the pressure in the middle ear is greater or less than the pressure in the environment, it can cause pain, discomfort, and hearing loss. Other symptoms of aerotitis may include dizziness, vertigo, and a sensation of fullness or pressure in the ear.
Aerotitis is caused by a blockage in the Eustachian tube, which connects the middle ear to the back of the throat. The blockage can be caused by swelling or inflammation of the lining of the Eustachian tube, a buildup of mucus or fluid in the middle ear, or changes in pressure caused by altitude or other factors.
Treatment for aerotitis may include over-the-counter pain relievers, decongestants, or nasal sprays to help relieve symptoms. In some cases, a doctor may need to perform a procedure to relieve pressure in the middle ear, such as inserting a tube or making a small incision in the eardrum to allow air to escape. Prevention of aerotitis may involve using specialized earplugs or other devices to regulate pressure changes during air travel or other activities that involve rapid altitude changes.