Researchers have discovered that when a person suffers from chronic ear infections, the culprit may be a film of bacteria or other microorganisms that builds up behind the eardrum, not unlike dental plaque on unbrushed teeth. Antibiotics are not always effective against this so-called biofilm, so it helps doctors greatly to know whether it is present before prescribing a course of treatment. Whereas conventional scopes aren’t able to see beyond the surface of the eardrum, a new tool utilizing optical coherence tomography is shedding some light on the situation.
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Researchers tested a prototype of a new OCT device