Otitis media is an inflammation and infection of the middle ear (the chamber behind the eardrum lined with membrane). It often is related to an inflammation or infection of the throat or the passageway that connects the middle ear to the back of the throat (eustachian tube).
When the opening of the eustachian tube is inflamed or obstructed, the normal ventilation of the middle ear is disrupted, leading to pressure changes and an accumulation of fluid inside the middle ear.
Blockage of the eustachian tubes may be caused by the following:
Tobacco smoke or other environmental irritants
Infected or overgrown adenoids
Sudden increase in pressure (such as during an airplane landing)
Drinking while lying on the back
Commonly Prescribed Drugs