Skip to content

Mastoid Process: Location, Function and Pain

Mastoid Process: Location, Function and Pain: Your mastoid course of is part of your temporal bone that’s positioned simply behind your ears. The mastoid course of is a small triangular-shaped bone that protrudes from both facet on the base of your cranium. You may find your mastoid in case you plac

Mastoid Process: Location, Function and Pain
Mastoid Process: Location, Function and Pain

Mastoid Process: Location, Function and Pain:

Your mastoid course of is part of your temporal bone that’s positioned simply behind your ears. The mastoid course of is a small triangular-shaped bone that protrudes from both facet on the base of your cranium. You may find your mastoid in case you place your fingers behind your earlobe. The principle operate of the mastoid course of is to attach your neck muscle groups to your cranium and assist regulate stress in your ear.

The mastoid course of has a construction of a honeycomb filled with mastoid air cells. The mastoid can turn into painful if in case you have a center ear an infection. This may occur due to irritation on account of infections, pus filling the mastoid air cells, trauma to the cranium, or cysts simply behind both of your ears. Normally, eliminating ache within the mastoid course of requires treating the underlying reason behind ache behind your ears.

On this article, you’ll find out in regards to the totally different causes behind ear ache that’s related along with your mastoid course of. Additionally, you will learn the way to deal with center ear infections to assist forestall the mastoid course of ache getting worse.

Location of the Mastoid Course of

Your cranium is made up of many bones that assist to guard your mind. Based on the Encyclopaedia Britannica, the mastoid course of is positioned on both facet of the pinnacle behind the ear. It is possible for you to to find the mastoid course of simply by feeling for the protruding bone behind your ear.

Many medical web sites describe the mastoid course of as a conical or pyramidal projection on the base of both facet of your cranium. That’s the reason many docs really feel behind each ears to test for indicators of ache or irritation if in case you have a suspected ear an infection.

The mastoid surrounds the internal and center ear.

Check Out: Pain Under Left Rib

Perform of the Mastoid Course of

Though your mastoid course of can turn into sore and infected if in case you have an ear an infection or cyst behind your ear, its capabilities aren’t all related along with your listening to.

Many muscle and nerves in your head are related to the mastoid course of. These muscle groups connect with the mastoid course of assist in rotating and flexing your head and likewise opening your jaw.

Additionally, based on data printed by the Aalborg College, the mastoid course of is concerned within the swallowing course of.

Dr. Sabrina Felson on WebMD says that additionally it is thought that the air cells within the mastoid course of assist to manage ear stress and shield the fragile constructions of the ear. Dr. Felson says that many very important constructions go by way of the mastoid.

Signs of Mastoid Course of Ache

If the realm across the mastoid course of turn into contaminated or infected, you’ll normally have ache behind your ear. It’s potential that irritation and swelling can happen within the honeycomb-type construction of the mastoid course of.

Based on Stanford Kids’s Well being, a number of the frequent signs related to mastoid ache are swelling behind the ear, fever, and drainage from the ear. In some circumstances, ache and irritation within the mastoid course of could cause non permanent listening to loss.

Professor of Otolaryngology Dr. Arlen Meyers says that ache behind the ear could also be worse at evening. To substantiate the seriousness of ear an infection inflicting the ache, docs will take blood checks to test for top ranges of white blood cells. There additionally could also be indicators of micro organism in swabs taken from the ear.

Causes of Mastoid Course of Ache

Let’s look in additional element why you might need ache and swelling behind one or each of your ears.

Center ear an infection causes mastoiditis

An an infection in your center ear (otitis media) is normally responsible for mastoid course of ache and is often referred to as mastoiditis.

Based on Dr. Richard Miyamoto from the Division of Otolaryngology on the Indiana College College of Medication, mastoiditis is a bacterial an infection of the center ear. The an infection could cause pus to develop within the mastoid course of bone and trigger it to really feel tender to the touch and look visibly purple and swollen. The mastoid course of ache attributable to a center ear an infection will really feel like a throbbing persistent ache that could be very uncomfortable.

It is vitally necessary to hunt medical consideration for a center ear an infection that causes ache and swelling behind your ear. Dr. Sabrina Felson on WebMD says that problems from mastoiditis could be nausea and vomiting, dizziness, lack of listening to, extreme complications, and meningitis – which could be life-threatening.

Docs normally deal with critical center ear infections with antibiotics. These assist to kill off micro organism which are inflicting a buildup of pus and cease discharge out of your ear. Typically, surgical procedure is required to empty fluid from the center ear or take away the contaminated mastoid.

If it’s important to take a course of antibiotics, it’s necessary to recollect to take probiotics to assist restore wholesome micro organism to your intestine. That may additionally assist to stop outbreaks of yeast infections because of antibiotics.

For data on the way to deal with delicate circumstances of an outer ear an infection, please learn my article on the way to eliminate an ear an infection.

Cholesteatoma and ache within the mastoid course of

One purpose for mastoid course of ache in only one ear is a cholesteatoma.

A cholesteatoma is a white mass of keratin that may type within the mastoid course of. Based on researchers from Harvard Medical College, cholesteatomas can type if there’s a persistent gap within the eardrum or if the Eustachian tube is blocked. In time, the cholesteatoma can lead to listening to loss and put an individual at a larger threat of an internal ear an infection.

If the cholesteatoma causes mastoid ache with an an infection, then signs of mastoiditis shall be current. This contains smelly drainage from the ear, redness and swelling in the back of the ear, and mastoid course of tenderness.

Normally, docs need to take away the cholesteatoma to stop repeated ear infections and everlasting damage to the listening to.

Trauma to the facet of your cranium

Trauma to the temporal bone on the facet of your cranium the place the mastoid course of is positioned could cause ache and different problems.

There are a selection of the explanation why an damage to the realm behind your ear could cause problems. The journal Craniomaxillofacial Trauma & Reconstruction studies blunt traumatic head damage can injury the mastoid course of and trigger ache. For instance, there are nerves and muscle groups related to your mastoid. Injury to the mastoid could cause facial paralysis, injury to the internal or center ear, or inner bleeding.

Docs say that correct analysis of the extent of head accidents is crucial to assist get the most effective restoration. Dr. John Atkinson from the Mayo Clinic advises that there are some conditions the place you must go to your physician for a head damage. Warning indicators of problems from a head damage embody dizziness, nausea and vomiting, blurred or double imaginative and prescient, confusion, or temper modifications.

Mumps inflicting mastoid course of ache

Mumps is a viral an infection affecting principally youngsters that may trigger mastoid course of ache behind the ears and a swollen jaw.

The Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention say that mumps is a contagious viral an infection. It normally causes a fever and muscle aches, in addition to swelling of the salivary glands.10 The College of Chicago says that the swelling can attain the mastoid course of. This may trigger the ear to be pushed out and upwards.

Normally, the signs of mumps are handled by consuming loads of fluids and resting in mattress. As a result of mumps is contagious, sufferers are normally remoted from others to stop spreading the an infection.

Tumor within the mastoid course of

In very uncommon circumstances, a cancerous tumor might be a purpose for ache within the mastoid course of.

The Ghana Medical Journal reported that generally squamous cell carcinoma can have an effect on the mastoid. This causes complications, fever, neck stiffness, and different indicators of mastoiditis. Therapy requires surgical procedure and radiotherapy.

It’s good to do not forget that within the majority of circumstances, swelling and ache behind one or each ears is normally the results of a center ear an infection and never most cancers. Though one of these an infection could be critical, it’s normally treatable with none long-term problems.

When to See a Physician for Mastoid Course of Ache

Mastoid course of ache that has indicators of irritation behind both ear shouldn’t be ignored. Interior or center ear infections could cause critical problems and be tough to deal with if left too lengthy. Additionally, youngsters are extra vulnerable to mastoiditis and require immediate medical consideration to deal with indicators of an ear an infection.

Based on docs from the Mayo Clinic and WebMD, you must search medical consideration for suspected ear infections within the following circumstances:

  • Mastoid ache behind the ears lasts for greater than in the future.
  • The ache could be very extreme and is persistent.
  • You discover discharge or pus draining out of your ear.
  • A baby who’s lower than 6 months outdated has ear an infection signs.
  • Together with ache and swelling behind the ear, you’ve got listening to loss, dizziness, or nausea.
  • You or your youngster has a stiff neck and excessive fever.

Article Sources

  1. Britannica. Mastoid course of.
  2. AUU. Position of the mastoid within the center ear operate.
  3. WebMD. Mastoiditis.
  4. StanfordChildrens. Mastoiditis.
  5. Medscape. Mastoiditis.
  6. MSDManuals. Mastoiditis.
  7. HeathHarvard. Persistent otitis media, cholesteatoma, and mastoiditis.
  8. Craniomaxillofac Trauma Reconstr. 2010 Jun; three(2): 105–113.
  9. MayoClinic. Bump on the pinnacle.
  10. CDC. Indicators and signs of mumps.
  11. UChicago. Mumps.
  12. Ghana Med J. 2005 Mar; 39(1): 28–32.
  13. MayoClinic. Ear an infection.
  14. WebMD. Ear infections.


Daniel Jack

For Daniel, journalism is a way of life. He lives and breathes art and anything even remotely related to it. Politics, Cinema, books, music, fashion are a part of his lifestyle.