E.N.T. is an abbreviation for Ear, Nose and Throat. E.N.T. specialists are physicians who provide medical and surgical care for problems affecting the head and neck. Ear, Nose and Throat also mean Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery. This is also frequently shortened to Otolaryngology or abbreviated to OTO/his. A variation of the term more commonly used in Europe is Otorhinolaryngology.
Otolaryngology is a regional specialty, involving both medical and surgical management of problems in the head and neck. The term otorhinolaryngology is derived from the Greek words for ear, nose and larynx, and the abbreviated term “E.N.T.” has been commonly used for many years. This appellation does not fully reflect the scope of a discipline which is concerned with disorders of the face, the ears, the oral cavity and pharynx, the upper respiratory tract, the neck, and even certain intra cranial tumors. For this reason, “Head and Neck Surgery” was added to the official title.
Prior to the advent of sulfa drugs and penicillin, the otolaryngologist spent the bulk of his time treating supportive conditions. Progress in surgery for deafness and disorders of the upper aero digestive tract was limited by the high risk and grave consequences of secondary infections. The use of antibiotics greatly improved the safety and success rate of reconstructive surgery in these inherently contaminated spaces. Since the 1950’s, significant advances have been made in the ability to restore function and aesthetic appearance to head and neck structures.
This field includes
- Otology (ear).
- Rhinology (nose and sinuses).
- Laryngology (throat).
- Facial plastic surgery.
- Head and neck cancer.
In fact, all areas of the head and neck are treated by E.N.T. doctors with the exception of the brain and spine.