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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Preauricular sinus


* Not a rare disease
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A preauricular sinus is a small birth defect. It is a tiny tube that opens just before the ear. It may occur in front of one or both ears. It is a trait that can be passed through families or can occur as a random error in embryonic development (i.e., development of a baby in the womb). The preauricular sinus may cause no symptoms, however it can become infected. Treatment of the infected sinus may involve antibiotics and/or surgical removal. Click here to view an image of a preauricular sinus.[1]
Last updated: 5/6/2009


  1. Scheinfeld NS, Nozad V. Preauricular sinus. eMedicine. 2008; . Accessed 5/6/2009.
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Basic Information

  • The Children’s Hospital Boston provides additional information on cysts and sinuses of the head and neck, which includes information on preauricular cyst. Click on Children's Hospital Boston to view this information page.
  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.

In Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. Click on the link to view this information. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • The Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is an catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Preauricular sinus. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.