To evaluate the short-term stability of postoperative hearing results after tympanoplasty.
Prospective database study.
Tertiary referral center.
1,367 cases of tympanoplasty I–IV were registered in the OTOKIR database between February 2004 and November 2013.
The authors included the 553 cases attending postoperative follow-ups at both 3 and 12 months.
Main Outcome Measure:
Analysis of the changes in pure-tone average of air conduction (AC), air-bone gap, and speech reception threshold and Word Recognition Score between follow-ups were performed.
The overall mean change between follow-ups was 0.7, 0.5, and 0.3 dB for the AC, air-bone gap, and speech reception threshold, respectively. A majority of cases (87.7%) had a change in AC of 10 dB or less, and only 7.6% of the tympanoplasty type I cases had a decrease in AC of more than 10 dB. Of the 1,367 cases registered, 47.5% of cases were lost to follow-up at 12 months.
The changes in hearing results after tympanoplasty are minimal during 3 to 12 months after surgery. This suggests that 3-month results are as valid for reporting as 12-month results. In addition, a possible bias that compromises the validity of reported results is introduced at 12 months because half of the cases are lost to follow-up. Including results from 3-month postoperative follow-up when reporting on tympanoplasty could reduce bias in reporting and enable more centers to contribute valid results.