Inner Ear Infection (Otitis Interna): Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019

An inner ear infection is an infection of the inner parts of the ear that control balance and hearing. This is often an inflammation or irritation of this part of the ear and is referred to as labyrinthitis. Inner ear infection is sometimes referred to as otitis interna.

Signs and symptoms of inner ear infection include feeling a spinning sensation, dizziness, balance problems, problems with walking, nausea, vomiting, and a ringing in the ear (tinnitus). Other associated symptoms include ear pain or hearing loss.

Causes of an inner ear infection

It is also possible to have a true infection by bacteria or viruses in the inner ear. Viral infections of the inner ear are more common causes than bacterial infections.

Other inner ear infection symptoms and signs


Ear Infection Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment See Slideshow

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Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.