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A long-term follow up of a personal series of 79 second ear stapedectomies indicates that the procedure can be undertaken with minimal complications. No bilateral dead ears or vestibular disasters have occurred. The results were satisfactory in 87.5% of ears, and bilaterally symmetrical hearing with an air-bone gap of 30 dB or less was achieved in 24% of patients. Whilst the established dictum that only one ear should be operated upon should not be abandoned, the results reported in this paper may encourage the more experienced to operate on the second ear at a later date in carefully selected cases.