Step 1

Microbiology 12

A 16-year-old boy presents to the emergency department with severe right ear pain, itching, and discharge for the past 3 days. He reports sleeping on his left side since the onset of symptoms. He denies fevers or changes in his hearing. He is a three-sport athlete and is presently in swimming season. He denies any trauma to the ear. His temperature is 37.5°C (99.5°F), pulse is 86 beats/minute, and blood pressure is 100/70 mm Hg. Physical examination is significant for tenderness with tragal pressure and an edematous and erythematous external auditory canal.

Which of the following is the most likely etiology of the patient's symptoms?

  • A) Bacteroides spp.
  • B) Candida albicans
  • C) Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • D) Staphylococcus aureus
  • E) Staphylococcus epidermidis


Dr. Ted O'Connell


Dr. Ted O'Connell