Exostoses are benign bone growths in the external ear canal that cause narrowing of the ear canal. Exostoses are often causes by cold water and is a condition often found in surfer’s ears more commonly in the east coast of Australia with the cool Australian waters.
The exostoses themselves cause little problems but may exacerbate frequent ear infections due to water or debris getting trapped due to poor drainage of the outer ear canal. In extreme cases, the ear canal may even close up due to the degree of bone growth. If the presence of the exostoses is causing frequent or troublesome ear infections or if necessary for access for another operation in the ear, exostoses may require surgical removal to restore the normal anatomical contours of the ear canal.