MARK THOMAS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARK THOMAS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Eardrum surgery. Image 6 of 6. Surgeon repairing a perforated (torn) eardrum (tympanic membrane) in a procedure known as a myringoplasty. He is using a microscope to see the eardrum within the ear canal. A small patch of skin cut from behind the ear is used to patch the tear. The eardrum is a very thin membrane and can easily be torn by trauma, infection, a loud noise, or the insertion of a foreign object into the ear canal. Perforation can reduce hearing, but surgical repair will not necessarily restore any lost hearing. For a sequence of images showing the operation see M572/037 to M572/042.
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