U.S. doctors online nowAsk doctors free
A member asked:

Does fluid draining from my babys ear mean he has an ear infection?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Russell Faust
Dr. Russell Faustanswered
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 30 years experience
Not necessarily: 2 conditions can result in "fluid" draining from a baby's ear(s): the first is an infection in the ear canal ("otitis externa"); the second is an infection behind the ear drum ("otitis media") that has come through the ear drum and is draining. Some baby's simply accumulate some small amount of bath water in ear canal. If the fluid is not clear, or if the fluid smells bad, get to your doctor.
Dr. Irwin Berkowitz
Specializes in Pediatrics
Most likely: The fluid can represent a middle ear infection which either caused a perforation of the ear drum to release pressure or oozing of fluid through the ear drum. This is particularly suspect if the baby recently has had an upper respiratory infection. Less likely, the fluid can be due to an external otitis(swimmer's ear) where water collects in the ear canal resulting in inflammation and pain.

Similar questions

A member asked:

If my baby tugs on his ears does he have an ear infection?

4 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Kathleen Forcier
Specializes in Pediatrics
Not necessarily: While it's true that some children with ear infections tug on their ears because they hurt, some babies pull on their ears because of ear wax, something itches, or they just discovered their ears were there. Kids with ear infections tend to have a fever, have trouble sleeping because the pain increases when they lie down, and be generally fussy. So look for other clues in addition to tugging.
Last updated Jun 4, 2019

Disclaimer:

Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.