A man in the UK contracted a potentially fatal infection following years of cotton bud use to clean his ears.

The 31-year-old developed a relatively rare condition known as necrotising otitis externa, a bacterial infection which affects the ear canal and skull base.

The condition came to a head when the male suffered from a seizure and was rushed to hospital.

When the male was examined, doctors found a piece of cotton wool lodged inside his ear canal. Medics believe it then became infected, spreading through his ear canal and into his skull.

Doctors later learned that the patient has been battling sporadic ear infections and headaches over a period of five years,  a telltale symptom of the condition.

Unfortunately for the patient, a CT scan revealed not one, but two puss-filled abscesses at the base of his skull.

Luckily, the man made a full recovery following a full course of treatment – but we bet he’ll be avoiding cotton buds for the moment at least.

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