CDC taps Rochester Regional Health to lead research on childhood ear infections


ROCHESTER, NY – (WROC) – After a national search the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention selected Rochester Regional Health to do research on childhood ear infections. The goal is to develop treatments to combat this painful illness.

The local medical provider received a one-year contract from the CDC to track the bacteria that cause ear infections in children.

“They are doing this because the bacteria germs are changing, said Dr. Michael Pichichero, director of Rochester Regional Health Research Institute. They are becoming resistant to the antibiotics children are receiving.”

Pediatrician Dr. Andrew Sherman said this research will help identify medications that will help alleviate the condition quickly.

“Repeated ear infections can cause hearing damage and hearing loss in the big picture,” said Dr. Sherman. ‘Not only that they cause pain.”

Because the bacteria is becoming resistant to antibiotics doctors have to try different medications until they find one that works. With the study they are able to drain the bacteria from the ears. The procedure provides instant relief.

“I have a 2-year-old son has had a couple of ear infections,” said Stephanie Johnson, the mother of the 2-year-old. ” He has gone to see Dr. Sherman to get the taps and it has been amazing.”

And it allows the doctors to identify medication that will fight the infection.

The study started last month and will run approximately for one year. The ear infection samples will be collected at three Rochester Regional Health sites in Geneva, Baycreek in Webster and Newark.

Ear infections occur in 60 percent of children between the ages of one and four years old.

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