EXAMINATION OF THE EAR, AND TESTS OF HEARING AND BALANCE EXAMINATION OF THE EAR
The pinna is easily visualised, but the ear canal and tympanic membrane require special techniques. The simplest is to use an electric otoscope (also termed an auriscope), which directs a bright light down a tubular speculum into the ear, and has a magnifying lens in its head to provide an enlarged view of the tympanic membrane. There can be few people who have not been examined in this way at some point during childhood. The pinna must be drawn slightly upward and backward to straighten the natural angulation of the ear canal for a good view to be obtained, but it may still be difficult in the presence of a narrow ear. Most GPs and children’s physicians, and indeed most otologists, use an otoscope for routine examination.