OBJECTIVES: We evaluated the results of mobile, one stage, bilateral ear surgery conducted in Greenland, where chronic otitis media with and without suppuration is prevalent. The study aimed to increase the number of operations conducted and to reduce the cost of ear surgery in remote areas. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study was longitudinal and prospective, with a two-year follow up. Seventeen East Greenlandic patients with bilateral chronic suppurative otitis media or chronic otitis media were selected. Their median age was 16 years; 53 per cent were female and 47 per cent male. Hearing was assessed using median air conduction pure tone average gain, and the 'take rate' (i.e. the percentage of total ears with a closed perforation) was evaluated. RESULTS: All patients attended for follow up. Eighty-two per cent had at least one perforation closed, and the overall take rate was 65 per cent of the 34 ears. The median air conduction pure tone average gain after two years was 18 dB and 13 dB for the right and left ears, respectively. Fourteen patients (82 per cent) obtained an air conduction pure tone average hearing level of < or =25 dB in at least one ear. In total, 71 per cent of the patients were satisfied. There were no hearing hazards. CONCLUSIONS: The results of mobile, one stage, bilateral ear surgery conducted in Greenland for long-lasting chronic suppurative otitis media and chronic otitis media were acceptable and safe, and more ears underwent surgery at reduced cost compared with unilateral ear surgery.
Journal of Laryngology and Otology, 2009, Vol 123, Issue 10, p. 1108-13