Functions of The Eardrum

Main tasks of tympanic mebrane

The Ear

The eardrum has two main tasks:

1. Hearing: The eardrum, which forms the surface area of the sound waves, is responsible for generating vibration from the sound waves in the hearing and transferring this vibration to the ossicles.

2. Protection (barrier function): The eardrum separating the middle ear from the outer ear canal also acts as a barrier by preventing water, bacteria and other foreign matter from reaching the middle ear.

functions of the eardrum,tasks of tympanic mebrane,

In the event of a permanent hole in the eardrum, the eardrum cannot perform some of these tasks depending on the location and size of the hole.

You can watch the following animation videos showing the operation of the eardrum and the transmission of sound waves from the middle ear to the inner ear.

If your eardrum is perforated, always protect your ear from water contact!

Patients with holes in the eardrum must protect their ears from water contact. During showering, water contact can be prevented by covering the outer ear canal with cotton or cotton-soaked ear plugs during bathing. During swimming, it is very difficult to prevent water contact with the eardrum. People who have eardrum holes should not swim and put their head into water. Many ear plugs can leak water with pressurized water.

In patients with a perforated eardrum, repeated water leakage into the ear, or recurrent otitis media, the following may occur:

- Progression of hearing loss

- Increased tinnitus

- Chronic infection and destruction of ear structures

- Increased risk of complications due to ear infections (memengitis, brain abscess, facial paralysis, neck vein infections ...)

- Development of cholesteatoma (foci of inflammation of skin cells)

Murat Enoz, MD, Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgeon - ENT Doctor in Istanbul

Private Office:
Address: İncirli Cad. No:41, Kat:4 (Dilek Patisserie Building), Postal code: 34147, Bakırköy - İstanbul
Appointment Phone: +90 212 561 00 52
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Fax: +90 212 542 74 47