The diagnosis and treatment of a variant type of auricular sinus: postauricular sinus.


Department of Otolaryngology, Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-Sen University, 107 West Yan Jiang Road, Guangzhou, 510120, China. [Email]


OBJECTIVE : To make otolaryngologists aware of the variant types of auricular sinus, we have performed a systematic review of patient diagnoses and presented our operative experiences.
METHODS : From 2009 to 2013 in Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hospital, there was a total of 20 children with the variant type of auricular sinuses including the comprehensive group. Postauricular sinuses have pits located posterior to the imaginary vertical line that is tangent to the external auditory canal. Sinuses that penetrate the cartilage and cause postauricular swelling or skin defects characterize type 1 of the variant type, while sinuses that adhere to the cartilage and cause preauricular or auricular swelling or skin defects characterize type 2. Patients with pits both anterior to and posterior to the imaginary vertical line comprise the comprehensive group. The patients who had infected underwent auricular sinusectomy using a dual approach, with accurate fistula tracing and proper cartilage removal.
RESULTS : Sixteen children who had infected sinus underwent surgery, while the other four were asymptomatic. Ten children (62.5%) of 16 patients were diagnosed as type 1 of the variant type, 2 (12.5%) as type 2. Four children (25%) were diagnosis as the comprehensive group. The asymptomatic could not be defined as the sinuses location were unknown. Sixteen children (100%) of 16 patients who underwent surgery had a history of misdiagnosis and treatment. These patients did not experience recurrence over a 5-year follow-up period.
CONCLUSIONS : The locations of pits and sinuses help to categorize the different types of auricular sinus. The effective method that we have described should be considered a viable way to reduce recurrence.


Anomalies,Auricular sinus,Diagnosis,Excision,Postauricular sinus,