External ear tumors - benign / nonneoplastic
Keratosis obturans

Author: Nat Pernick, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 23 February 2018, last major update October 2013

Copyright: (c) 2002-2018, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.

PubMed Search: Keratosis obturans

Cite this page: Pernick, N. Keratosis obturans. PathologyOutlines.com website. http://www.pathologyoutlines.com/topic/earkeratosisobturans.html. Accessed October 16th, 2018.
Definition / general
  • Accumulation of keratin debris deep within external auditory canal, which may cause bone remodeling and inflamed epithelium
  • May cause severe erosion of petrous bone (Br J Radiol 1975;48:170)
Case reports
  • Removal of keratin plug
  • Surgery not required
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Tightly packed keratin squames in lamellar pattern
  • Diffuse acanthosis and hyperkeratosis of skin of canal with underlying chronic inflammatory infiltrate
  • No osteonecrosis, no overlying epithelial loss