Nonsurgical correction of congenital auricular deformities

Clin Plast Surg. 1990 Apr;17(2):383-95.


Congenital auricular deformities are found in 55.2 per cent of neonates at birth. When the deformities are not hypoplastic, nonsurgical correction is very easy and reliable. Lop ear and Stahl's ear respond well to the nonsurgical correction only during the neonatal period, while protruding ears and cryptotia respond until approximately 6 months of age. We noticed that there are variations in the time period for response to nonsurgical correction in the different types of auricular deformities. We have continually observed the natural changes in 1000 babies' auricular shapes from birth to 1 year of age. Lop ear and Stahl's ear were auricular deformities that appeared in 47 per cent of all newborn babies. Eighty-four per cent of these deformities disappeared spontaneously during the first year of life. They were present in 7 per cent of the 1000 babies at 1 year of age. On the other hand, the percentage of protruding ears increases from 0.4 per cent at birth to 5.5 per cent at 1 year of age. Our observations show that most of the protruding ears are acquired deformities. If a baby is placed in a supine position, the weight of the baby's head will fold the ear forward when the baby turns its head to one side; this is the mechanism presented as the probable cause for the acquired protruding ear.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Ear, External / abnormalities*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn