Is tympanic infrared thermometry valid in non-naive tympanic membranes?

Udi Shapira, Ophir Handzel, Nidal Muhanna, Yahav Oron, Rani Abu Eta, Gilad Horowitz, Anton Warshavsky, Omer J. Ungar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To investigate the impact of with tympanostomy tubes (TT) on infrared tympanic membrane thermometer (ITMT) results and to provide a systematic review of ITMT results in non-naïve tympanic membranes. Study design: Original prospective blinded case series and systematic literature review. Settings: A single tertiary university-affiliated medical center. Methods: ITMT measurements of patients with unilateral TT and contralateral naïve control ear were randomly conducted by a single investigator blinded to the TT side before and after cerumen was removed from the external auditory canals. A systematic literature search of “MEDLINE” via “PubMed,” “Embase,” and “Google Scholar” on comparable published cases was performed. Results: The mean paired differences (95% confidence interval [CI]) between ventilated and non-ventilated ears before and after cerumen removal were 0.08 ºC/0.14 ºF (−0.04 to 0.19 ºC/− 0.07º–0.34º) and 0.62 ºC/1.12 ºF (0.04–0.25 ºC/0.07–0.45 ºF), respectively (P < 0.001 and P = 0.01, respectively). Conclusion: These findings support the validity and accuracy of ITMT in the setting of ventilated ears.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)549-556
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2023


  • Infrared tympanic membrane thermometer
  • Temperature measurement
  • Tympanostomy tube
  • Ventilation tube


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