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Clinical Practice Guideline: Cerumen Impaction

Clinical Practice Guideline: Cerumen Impaction

The guideline was published as a supplement in the January 2017 issue of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery.

The primary purpose of this guideline is to help clinicians identify patients with cerumen impaction who may benefit from intervention, and to promote evidence-based management.  Another purpose of the guideline is to highlight needs and management options in special populations or in patients who have modifying factors. The guideline is intended for all clinicians who are likely to diagnose and manage patients with cerumen impaction and applies to any setting in which cerumen impaction would be identified, monitored, or managed. The guideline does not apply to patients with cerumen impaction associated with the following conditions: dermatologic diseases of the ear canal; recurrent otitis externa; keratosis obturans; prior radiation therapy affecting the ear; previous tympanoplasty/myringoplasty or canal wall down mastoidectomy or other surgery affecting the ear canal.

Update Leadership: Seth R. Schwartz, MD, MPH (Chair), Anthony E. Magit, MD (Assistant Chair), Richard M. Rosenfeld, MD, MPH (Methodologist)

Guideline Update Group: Bopanna B. Ballachanda, PhD, Jesse M. Hackell, MD, Helen J. Krouse, PhD RN, Claire M. Lawlor, MD, Kenneth Lin, MD, MPH, Kourosh Parham, MD, PhD, David R. Stutz, MD, Sandra Walsh, BS, Erika A. Woodson, MD, Ken Yanagisawa, MD  

This guideline is endorsed by:

  • American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)
  • American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
  • American Geriatric Society (AGS)
  • American Neurotology Society (ANS)
  • American Otological Society (AOS)
  • American Society of Geriatric Otolaryngology (ASGO)
  • American Society or Pediatric Otolaryngology (ASPO)
  • Society of Otorhinolaryngology and Head-Neck Nurses (SOHN)

This guideline is supported by:

  • American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA)


For Physicians
    1. Implications for Otolaryngologists
    2. Implications for Non-Otolaryngologists