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International Journal of Pediatrics
Volume 2016, Article ID 1729218, 4 pages
Research Article

Comparison of Axillary and Tympanic Temperature Measurements in Children Diagnosed with Acute Otitis Media

Department of Pediatrics, Zeynep Kamil Maternity and Childrens’ Diseases Training and Research Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey

Received 2 July 2016; Accepted 9 August 2016

Academic Editor: Alessandro Mussa

Copyright © 2016 Hatice Hilal Doğan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Acute otitis media [AOM] may affect the accuracy of tympanic temperature measurements. We aimed to compare tympanic temperature measurements in patients with AOM against control groups, as well as compare the tympanic temperatures with axillary thermometry. Methods. This is a prospective, observational study. Patients from pediatric outpatient and emergency clinics who were diagnosed as single-sided AOM were included consecutively in the study. Normal ears of patients and children having the same age and gender who were not diagnosed as AOM were also studied as controls. Results. In patients with AOM, infected ears had higher temperatures than normal ears with a mean of °C. There was no significant difference between the right and left tympanic temperatures in control group. Compared with axillary temperature, the sensitivity of tympanic temperature in the infected ear was 91.7% and the specificity was 74.8%. Conclusion. Comparisons of axillary and tympanic temperatures in children with AOM during the active infection concluded higher tympanic temperatures in infected ears. We suggest that the higher tympanic temperatures, approximately 0.5°C in our study, in infected ears may aid in diagnosis of patients with fever without a source in pediatric clinics.