FDA approves Tula system for recurrent pediatric ear infections


The Food and Drug Administration has approved the Tubes Under Local Anesthesia (Tula) System for treatment of recurrent ear infections (otitis media) via tympanostomy in young children, according to a release from the agency.

A stamp saying "FDA approved." Olivier Le Moal/Getty Images

Consisting of Tymbion anesthetic, tympanostomy tubes developed by Tusker Medical, and several devices that deliver them into the ear drum, the system can be used in an office setting under local anesthesia rather than in hospital settings with general anesthesia.

“This approval has the potential to expand patient access to a treatment that can be administered in a physician’s office with local anesthesia and minimal discomfort,” said Jeff Shuren, MD, director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health.

The approval was based on data from 222 children treated with the device, with a procedural success rate of 86% in children under 5 years and 89% in children aged 5-12 years. The most common adverse event was insufficient anesthetic.

The system should not be used in children with allergies to some local anesthetics or those younger than 6 months. It also is not intended for patients with preexisting issues with their eardrums, such as perforated ear drums, according to the press release.

The Tula system was granted a Breakthrough Device designation, which means the FDA provided intensive engagement and guidance during its development. The full release can be found on the FDA website.

Next Article: