Difference between Otolaryngologist and ENT

Key Difference:  An Otolaryngologist is a medical expert in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases related to the ear, nose and threat. Ear, nose and throat are collectively known as ENT. Therefore ENTs or ENT specialists also refer to Otolaryngologists. Therefore, they both are the same.

Otolaryngologists are doctors or physicians who are specialized in treating the patients with problems of ear, nose and throat (ENT). Medical specialty of ENT is the oldest of all medical specialties in the United States. An Otolaryngologist diagnoses and provides treatment of the disease or disorders related to nose, ear, sinuses, larynx, mouth and throat. In additional to these parts, they also consider neck and face structures.

The subspecialists in this field choose one of the areas like allergy, facial plastic and reconstructive surgery, laryngology, otology, pediatric otolaryngology for persuing speciality in one of these fields.

Primarily, Otolaryngologist looks into the diseases concerned with ear, neck and throat (ENT), they are also known by the name ENT or ENT specialists. To become an Otolaryngologist, one needs to complete a medical course to become a physician. In United States, these physicians must complete five years of surgical residency which comprises of one year general surgical training and rest of the four years in otolaryngology training.

They treat a range of diseases or disorders - like it may be a simple throat infection or a life threatening cancer.  Otolaryngologists lie in the category of both physicians and surgeons. In the role of surgeon they perform procedures like ear tube surgery, surgical correction of protruding ears, and many more. Some common problems for which a patient seeks advice and help from an Otolaryngologist are decreased hearing, allergies or a constant runny nose and constant sore threat. There is no difference between an Otalaryngologist or ENT. They both are the same.

Comparison between Otolaryngologist and ENT:





Otolaryngologists are doctors or physicians who are specialized in treating the patients with problems of ear, nose and throat (ENT).

Same as an Otolaryngologist

Word Origin

From Ancient Greek words: οὖς ous (gen.: ὠτός otos) "ear", ῥίς rhis "nose", λάρυγξ larynx "larynx" and -λογία -logia "study"

Short for ear, nose and throat

Image Courtesy: entdoctorchicago.com

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