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Etymology: L, cera, wax; Gk, lysis, a loosening; L, agere, to do
a medication that dissolves or loosens cerumen (earwax) to allow for its removal.
An agent that dissolves cerumen in the external ear canal. Obstruction of the ear canal with cerumen can cause itching, pain, and temporary conductive hearing loss. The first approach to treatment should be removal of the obstruction manually with a blunt curet or loop or by irrigation. Cerumen solvents are not always recommended because they often do not eliminate the problem and frequently cause maceration of the skin of the canal and allergic reactions.
See also: agent