Accessory Auricle: Surgical Removal

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Accessory auricles are common congenital malformation .They are often unilateral but may also be bilateral. They are related the first branchial arch, hence seen in front of the tragus. The first branchial arch also gives rise to the mandible and maxilla, explaining why accessory tragi have also been reported along the jaw line.

There are different names to it- as heterotrophic tragus , supernumerary tragus, preauricular skin tags, accessory auricle, polyotia, rudimentary ear, supernumerary pinna etc. Clinically, they are noted on physical examination at birth or by parents in the newborn period. Accessory tragi typically present as pedunculated or sessile, skin-colored tags located in the preauricular region. On palpation they might feel soft or firm depending upon the degree of underlying cartilaginous structure

Accessory auricles may be part of a complex of malformations, which include anomalies of the ear and kidney.

Treatment might be sought if there are cosmetic reasons. Surigcal exscion is done under local anesthesia. It is generally advisable for this to be completed before the child begins school. Incomplete surgical excision can leave an exposed cartilaginous fragment, resulting in slow healing or chondrodermatitis