Vertical Ear Canal Ablation

Vertical Ear Canal Ablation

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Ear canal surgeries in dogs can be performed for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes, or a combination of these. As a therapeutic procedure, surgery can be considered either for definitive treatment or as an adjunct to ongoing medical treatment.

It’s important to select the appropriate type of surgery for chronic ear infections in dog and cats, to avoid either insufficient  treatment (and the possible need for revision surgery later) or overtreatment, which could expose the patient to a greater number of (or more severe) complications.

Vertical Ear Canal Ablation

Vertical canal ablation is used to salvage a functional horizontal canal when vertical canal is severely diseased.

“Vertical canal ablation has certain advantages over lateral wall resection”

The procedure combines the advantages of lateral wall resection (drainage, ventilation, and preservation of hearing.) with total ear canal ablation ( total removal of severely diseased tissue)

Vertical canal ablation has certain advantages over lateral wall resection including

  • Total removal of vertical canal tissue
  • Less postoperative exudat
  • Less postoperative pain
  • Less incised cartilage, resulting in better healing, and
  • Improved cosmetic effect


  • Irreversible hyperplastic otitis
  • Severe trauma
  • Or neoplasia limited to vertical ear canal

Most cases of neoplasia and hyperplastic otitis, however, involve both the vertical and horizontal portions of the ear canal, making this procedure less applicable than total ear canal ablation

Postoperative care:

  • Topical antibiotic-steroid medication is use
  • The ears are taped over the head
  • E-collar
  • Suture removal in 14 days

”Postoperative  care is similar to lateral wall resection, although the wound is less likely to dehisce.”


Vertical canal ablation has fewer complications than lateral wall resection surgery.