The term microtia is used when there is a grossly underdeveloped external ear (pinna). This may occur with or without an abnormal development of external auditory canal (atresia). Complete absence of an external ear is called Anotia. These may occur on one or both sides. It may be isolated or associated with other anomalies of the jaw or face. Rarely there may occur anomalies in other parts of the body such as the heart and abdomen which should be screened.
It is mandatory to check the hearing in both ears in babies with microtia. This is done by a comprehensive hearing assessment which includes ABR (BERA) – both AC and BC, ASSR and conditioned audiometery.
Reconstruction of the ears is carried out in association with a plastic & reconstructive surgeon. Options include a staged reconstruction using either a rib graft or a medpor to create the framework over which skin flaps are draped. Alternatively, some patients choose to have a silicone prosthetic ear which is attached to the side using special osseointegrated implants (screws).