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What is Total Ear Canal Ablation?

Total ear canal ablation in dogs is a surgical procedure involving the removal of the middle ear or tympanic bulla. Total ear canal ablation in dogs is a procedure veterinarians use to treat ruptured ear drums due to chronic ear infections, cancer, and congenital imperforate ear canals. This form of surgery is a delicate procedure as the ears have a number of close facial nerves, which is why an experienced and licensed veterinary surgeon is required to perform a total ear canal ablation for your dog. 

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Total Ear Canal Ablation Procedure in Dogs

Before a total ear canal ablation procedure can be performed, the veterinarian will need to collect a blood sample to run a chemistry profile. A chemistry profile will tell the veterinarian how the internal organs are functioning, which is important when a surgical procedure needs to be performed. If the dog is in good health, the surgical procedure will proceed with a pre-sedative drug to prepare the canine for the procedure. During the procedure, the canine will remain relaxed and comfortable with a gas anesthetic paired with oxygen infusion. The hair on and around the ears will be shaved, then prepped with an antiseptic solution. 

During the procedure, the distended ear canal will be removed entirely. The veterinarian will open up the middle ear, or bulla, to remove all infected tissue from inside the ear. This portion of the total ear canal ablation procedure is called bulla osteotomy. Drains will be inserted into the surgical site if the veterinarian feels the infection is severe and the area needs to be allowed to drain before closing the surgical site. If a drain has been placed, an antiseptic solution will be injected into drains during the recovery process and the bandages will be changed twice daily for up to a week. The dog will remain in the hospital for the duration of the surgical day.  

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Efficacy of Total Ear Canal Ablation in Dogs

Total ear canal ablation in dogs is an effective form of treatment for canines that suffer from chronic ear infections. If both the right and left ears of the dog have been surgically corrected, that dog’s ear infections will be permanently cured. The middle ear will be removed, therefore, there is no possible way for bacteria or yeast to enter the ear and cause an infection. Dog owners will save a considerable amount of money after the surgery, if their dog has suffered from ear infections for the duration of their life. Due to the fact that a dog will feel ill when affected by an inner ear problem, most dog owners report their dog having more energy and displaying a much happier attitude than ever before.  

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Total Ear Canal Ablation Recovery in Dogs

Following surgery, the dog will remain in the hospital for the duration of the surgical day. If a drain has been placed, an antiseptic solution will be injected into drains during the recovery process and the bandages will be changed twice daily for up to a week. The dog will require at-home care including administration of medications and exercise restrictions. 

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Cost of Total Ear Canal Ablation in Dogs

Total ear canal ablation in dogs can cost a dog owner $500 to $3,500. The total cost of the surgery depends on the severity of the dog’s condition. 

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Dog Total Ear Canal Ablation Considerations

Total ear canal ablation in dogs will cause some degree of hearing loss. The physical appearance of the dog’s ear will be altered after an ear canal ablation.

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Total Ear Canal Ablation Prevention in Dogs

Chronic ear infections can be prevented with proper ear cleanings. However, some dog breeds are prone to acquiring infections of the ears due to their natural formation. Dog breeds, such as the coon dog, are commonly affected with chronic ear infections. Talk to your veterinarian about the most effective way to prevent ear infections in your dog. 

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Total Ear Canal Ablation Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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Golden Retriever

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Six Years

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Teca

Typical cost for teca surgery

yesterday

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. It is not possible for me to answer that question without knowing more about the situation, unfortunately. Cost of surgery depend on the level of expertise of the surgeon, where you live in the world, and what exactly needs to happen for your animal. That is a question that you can ask your veterinarian, as they know more about the situation with your pet, and can let you know more cost and expected outcome.

yesterday

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Brussels Griffon

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Fourteen Years

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Unknown severity

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Cushings, Itching

Sadie needs a Total ear canal ablation Aug 5th. She is fragile, has weak legs, can't see to much, can't hear good, anal glands done every 2 weeks, has cushings and her feet itch all the time. We took her to have this done, everything, including an overnight stay was done, except the surgery. What do I need to do for my best friend that I love so very much.

July 28, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Your veterinarian likely wants to make sure that she is stable and okay to have the anesthesia and surgery. Without being able to see her, I can't say for sure, but it sounds like that are a few conditions that need to be controlled before they proceed - it would be best to talk to your veterinarian and see what their thoughts are on Sadie and what the next best step would be for her. I hope that all goes well for Sadie.

July 28, 2020

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Black Lab

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Eight Years

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Unknown severity

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Ozzing Smell Loss Of Weight And Fur

We are trying to find a place where they can do a total ear canal removal where there is payment plans do you recommend any place in Florida or somewhere close to venice FL?

July 9, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Sara O. DVM

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hello, It is best to look at a specialty hospital or the vet school. Many places will accept Care Credit for payment and you can pay off over a certain period of time. It will be best to just call around to many of the different clinics to see who will do payment plans or take care credit.

July 9, 2020

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Tobi

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Yorkshire Terrier

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14 Years

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Serious severity

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Smell
Oozing
Ear Infection

My Yorkshire Terrier is 14 years old and she has had a chronic ear infection for many years. Total ear canal ablation has been recommended by UPenn, and I am looking for a veterinary surgeon who could do the procedure in SW Florida (or within a 2 hour drive of Ft. Myers). Recommendations welcome.

Feb. 1, 2018

Tobi's Owner


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The links below are to the details of board certified Veterinary Surgeons in and around Fort Myers, FL who may be able to perform the surgery for you; I do not know any of the Surgeons or Centers in this area so I cannot give you any personal recommendation. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM http://find.vetspecialists.com/florida/fort-myers/veterinary-specialist/specialized-veterinary-services-3152 http://find.vetspecialists.com/united-states/fort-myers/veterinary-specialist/leonardo-baez-dvm-dacvs-sa http://find.vetspecialists.com/united-states/estero/veterinary-specialist/kimberly-goodrich-enderle-vmd-dacvs-sa http://find.vetspecialists.com/florida/estero/veterinary-specialist/specialists-in-veterinary-surgery

Feb. 1, 2018

If you have not gone yet I love I the ft myers area and went to svs on Daniels right past 75

July 8, 2018

Michelle C.

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otis

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Puggle

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8 Years

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Serious severity

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1 found helpful

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Smelly
Yeast In Ears
Loss Of Fur
Pain In Ear
Puffy Neck

Ive had a dog I have spent over $5000 in three years on his ear flushes, medication, surgeries............He has some good days but very few. He is a happy 8 year old dog when not in ear pain which is rarly. After numerous flushes, steroids, ear medication and bloodwork the different vets cannot figure out a cure. Its his right one ear only and smells rotton and consistantly leaks large amounts of black yeast. There has been times his ear ruptured. He screams and yelps of pain at times and I cannot afford a surgery they suggested for 50/50 chance that could run me 3-4000 dollars. He has become defensive of his ear and about to have a baby in two weeks. SPCA wont take him and the vets have little hope he will get better. what can i do

Aug. 30, 2017

otis' Owner


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1 Recommendations

I can understand your frustration and is must be hell for Otis going through all of this over the past few years; I am sure that your Veterinarians have already tried, tested and treated all the usual suspects which would lead us to surgical correction of the ear or total ear canal ablation surgery to improve airflow to the ear canal and to allow drainage of any nasty products. Regular cleaning with ear cleaning products would help but I understand that Otis is in pain and it may be impossible to get close to the ear; I really do not know what else to suggest unfortunately. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Aug. 30, 2017

PLEASE put the dog down! Never let an animal suffer.

Sept. 23, 2017

A W.

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Harley

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American Bulldog

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4 Years

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Serious severity

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Infection
Infection Swollen

I have a 3.5 yr old American Bulldog. She has had ear infections from day 1. I have tried the everything from ointments, to laser therapy to Oti-Pak E. And, she is basically allergic to herself and surroundings.I'm wondering if TECA-BO surgery be in her best interest..? NOTHING else seems to do much good.

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Mag

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Poodle mix

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9 Years

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Serious severity

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Serious severity

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Ear Infection

My beautiful Mag is 9 years old and the sweetest dog you can ever imagine. She has suffered chronic ear infections for many years that would heal and return and heal and return with antibiotics/antifungals. For the past year, its gotten to the point that her ear canal is not healing at all. She has a heart murmur and is on Vetmedin, Lasix and Enalapril which has improved her quality of life so much. She runs, plays, chases squirrels, eats well and loves to cuddle. Her damn right ear infection isn't improving and causes her so much pain to the point that she yelps when we touch her ear. The vet recommended TECO/LBO. With her heart condition, can she still have general anesthesia. And if so, is there any ear specialist surgeon you can please recommend in the Los Angeles area? Thank you for any and all help.

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Bonnie

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English Bulldog

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7 Years

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Serious severity

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Chonic Ear Infection

Bonnie is an English Bulldog turned 7 in July 2019. All her life she had chronic ear infections. This time since September 4, 2019 been on Prednisone 20mg per day, Cefpodoxime 100mg per day, and cleaning her ears before mealtime twice a day with Phyto Vet Baytril Dex SP. Yesterday follow up vet exam shows her ear canal still swollen that the ear drum cannot be seen. The vet that followed Bonnie all her life suggested a Total Ear Canal Ablation. We cannot keep Bonnie on these medications forever. I am waiting to get a call back from the surgeon. The problem at this time I don't have the money for this procedure. The choice would be to take care of my husband health procedures or Bonnie's. Just so you know Bonnie is my husband (girlfriend) best dog ever. Is there an alternative? Already sold everything to pay medical bills. It really hard to think that in this great Country you can work 40 to 50 years and you end up giving everything up for medical treatment. There is nothing left.

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Scooby

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Boxer

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5 Years

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Serious severity

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0 found helpful

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Chronic Abcess

Ear canal ear drum is gone due to misdiagnosed from veterinarian 3 years ago scooby has had 5 surgeries and just had catscan and more blood work. Osu telling me he has to have total ear canal removal and abcess removal in inner ear and jaw. Paid 1588.00 now they won't do surgery unless I have 3000.00 more I was told that veterinarian schools are less expensive however their not. And if my dog doesn't have surgery he can die. They will not take payments from me to save my dog life I'm heart broken no one will help after I spent thousands of dollars on my baby boy scooby and veterinarian just turn away.

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Millie

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French Bulldog

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2 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Itchy Ear And Odor

Our dog Millie is 2 yrs old and she has polys (mass warts) all down her ear canal. The vet was only able to remove half way down and said I would have to see a specialist because he does not have the tools or the experience for this procedure. It is not yet determined the severity of her condition, but if we have to remove her eardrum it is said that it will be 10 thousand dollars. It was also suggest from a family member that we could try the veterinarian college students to preform the surgery, but my concern is that if it is a major surgery I don't know if I want trainees to do this procedure or would that be perfectly fine.

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