Otology / Neuro-Otology Disorders

What are Otology and Neurotology?

Otology is a specialty dedicated to the care of the ears, which includes the hearing and balance systems. Oto- is the greek root word for ear and –ology refers to the study of something. The specialist who practices Otology has completed a five or six year residency in Otolaryngology and then completed a one to two year fellowship in Otology.

The Otologist is primarily a surgeon, but many disorders of the ear are helped with medical treatment alone. Infections, deafness, ear reconstruction and dizziness are all part of the Otologist’s practice.

Neurotology is closely related to Otology, but adds the skill and training to operate within the skull on the parts of the brain and nervous system that are concerned with hearing and balance. The training is usually obtained at the same time as the Otology training, although a surgeon may elect to only emphasize one or the other. Neurotologists operate on acoustic neuromas, glomus tumors, and other conditions found deep in the skull.