Background/aim: Surgical success is related with many factors belonging to both the patient and the disease. This study aims to analyse the preoperative and intraoperative characteristics, the postoperative results, and the factors affecting the surgical success in different types of chronic otitis media (COM). Materials and methods: A total of 1510 ears of 1398 patients who underwent COM surgery were included in the study. Postoperative results were obtained from 376 ears of 356 patients who had been followed after surgery. The demographic characteristics of the patients, such as age and sex, operative findings, preoperative audiological examination results, and final audiometric and otoscopic examination findings, were retrospectively obtained from the archives of the department. Results: The most frequent diagnosis was simple COM (39.9%), and the most frequently performed surgery was tympanoplasty without mastoidectomy (46.6%). The overall hearing success rate was found to be 75.8%. Postoperative hearing success was significantly associated with the chronic otitis subgroup, ossicular pathologies, and the condition of the middle ear mucosa. Postoperative graft take rate was found to be 78.6%. Graft success was statistically significantly higher in patients with normal middle ear mucosa. Performing mastoidectomy, the presence of patency in aditus ad antrum, and being a paediatric case had no impact on graft success. Conclusion: Factors affecting the success of COM surgery include age, chronic otitis subgroup, location and size of perforation, the condition of the middle ear mucosa, and the level of the ossicular disease. These factors should be known and an appropriate treatment plan should be prepared.