An osteopathic approach to the treatment of otitis media in children. A critical literature review.


Otitis Media COM) continues to be one of the most prevalent early childhood diseases (Carreiro, 2003; Sergueef, 2007): In 2010, acute OM was the most frequent diagnosis for United States children under 15 years old (Steele, Viola, Burns, Carreiro, 2010). The osteopathic profession has a long history of using osteopathic manipulative medicine COMM) in the management of OM and its complications. As Steele et al. demonstrate in their review, several studies reported its clinical efficacy (Steele et al., 2010) but controversy still surrounds otitis media and its treatment. The author was interested to know whether osteopathic treatment should be acknowledged as an effective alternative treatment for OM Background research was carried out using published works relating to OM and were accessed using different databases including: PubMed, Ostmed, Medscape, Science direct, Swetswise, and CINAHL. The keywords used were: otitis, osteopathic manipulative treatment, treatment, chronic otitis media, Eustachian tube. The search was limited to English and French. The main articles employed for the dissertation went as far back as 15 years. A large amount of articles could be found on conventional treatment of OM Due to a lack of osteopathic research, historical texts and articles were consulted as well and were mostly found at the European School of Osteopathy Library. Over eighty references were retrieved. Experimental studies and case reports were analysed ~to find out about both conventional and osteopathic treatment and management of OM and antibiotics and surgery. The author concluded that various challenges concerning OMM clinical trials exist and more studies will be needed to prove the place of osteopathy in the treatment of OM. Although OMT has shown some success in treating otitis media, there is little available documentation and further research is needed to validate the efficacy of osteopathic treatment in the management of OM