Disorders of the Auricular Cartilage  
Acute Perichondritis

Acute Perichondritis

Description : Acute perichondritis of the auricle is a bacterial infection following trauma to the ear. Acute perichondritis occurs most commonly following lacerations or incisions through the perichondrium. This type of perichondritis is a potentially serious condition since, if untreated, the underlying cartilage will become infected and ultimately necrotic, with collapse of the pinna.

Clinically, the skin of the ear is diffusely swollen, painful, and tender.

Treatment of acute perichondritis usually requires surgical incisions, with drainage or packing impregnated with a topical antibiotic solution effective against Pseudomonas and Proteus. Some authors advocate the insertion of tubes into the incisions, so. that repeated irrigation of the subperichondrial space with antibiotic solutions can be performed.

In this patient, a prolonged superficial infection of the external ear by Pseudomonas and Proteus progressed to a deeper involvement of the perichondrium. The superior twothirds of the pinna is diffusely swollen and erythematous.

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