Acute mastoiditis, once extremely common in children, has become rare since the advent of antimicrobial agents. Chronic mastoiditis, however, is still occasionally encountered in conjunction with chronic otitis media. Staphylococcus aureus, Proteus sp, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa are the predominant isolates that have been recovered from inflamed mastoids.1-3 Although a few studies have indicated that anaerobic bacteria play an important role in this condition,3 to my knowledge the bacteriology of chronic mastoiditis in children has not been confirmed with modern aerobic and anaerobic laboratory techniques. This report describes the aerobic and anaerobic bacteriology of aspirates from 24 children with chronic mastoiditis.
Subjects and Methods.—Specimens were obtained from 24 children (14 boys and ten girls) undergoing unilateral mastoidectomy at area hospitals in Los Angeles and Washington, DC, between July 1976 and May 1980. Ages ranged from 5 to 16 years (mean, 11 years). Patients were diagnosed as suffering from