The Human Body

Mastoid Process

Mastoid Process, conical prominence of the temporal bone of the human skull, situated behind the ear. It commonly becomes infected in cases of suppurative otitis media. The inner ear adjoins the hollow, spongy spaces within the mastoid process so that infection of the ear easily spreads to that area, causing pain and swelling. Surgical drainage of pus and injection of antibiotics usually eliminate mastoid infection and prevent its spread to nearby areas of the brain.