Indexed on: 12 Jul '14Published on: 12 Jul '14Published in: Acta oto-laryngologica
This study reveals that tragal cartilage tympanoplasty is a reliable technique, it has a high degree of graft take, and the tympanic re-aeration and hearing results are satisfactory.Cartilage is the grafting material of choice in advanced pathologies of the middle ear while the indications for its routine use remain controversial. The purpose of this study was to report our long-term experience with the 'tragal cartilage shield' tympanoplasty.This was a retrospective case series. The study was conducted on 612 adult patients from January 2003 until January 2012. We evaluated graft take, pure-tone average air-bone gap (PTA-ABG), postoperative aeration, and complications. The mean postoperative follow-up was 68 months.Sex, age, and tobacco smoke did not have any impact on postoperative results. Graft take was achieved in 99.35% of patients; there were no immediate postoperative complications. The overall average preoperative PTA-ABG was 44.95 ± 7.77 dB, whereas 1 year after surgery it was 10.66 ± 5.41 dB (p < 0.0001). Statistically significant improvement was observed up to 10 years after surgery. Moreover, we obtained a good tympanic ventilation (1 year after surgery, the average aeration score was 9.09 ± 1.93), which was stable up to 10 years.