This health video looks at alternative ways to help treat and manipulate ear infections.
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Jennifer Matthews: The sounds of childhood were often missed by 5 year-old Joshua. Allergies and recurrent ear infections affected his hearing. Standard treatments didn't help. Elaine Banks: The tubes would fall out, and then they'd have to have more surgery, have more tubes placed, and you were on a downward spiral of surgery and tubes, and the child still had the allergies, and the allergies were not treated. Jennifer Matthews: His mom, Elaine, was not willing to let Joshua miss out on his childhood. He needed verbal and social skills to thrive, so she enrolled him in a study at Oklahoma State University. Doctor Miriam Mills performs a series of osteopathic manipulations on Josh that start at the hip and work their way up to the head. Miriam Mills: Part of why he has problems with draining is that the base of his skull, where the venous drainage all drains out, is compressed and irritated and tight. Jennifer Matthews: Joshua showed improvement after the very first treatment. He no longer needs antibiotics. Doctor Mills credits this hands-on approach. Miriam Mills: I think my criteria for using antibiotics or for sending somebody for surgery are the same as they always were. It's just that I just don't seem to have the same need to do these things. Jennifer Matthews: They're results that are exciting for parents, too. Elaine Banks: I have a child that can communicate, that has his whole demeanor has changed. He's happy. He doesn't have that frustration. Jennifer Matthews: And Joshua no longer dreads his doctor's appointments. This is Jennifer Matthews reporting.