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Mechanisms of ear trauma and reconstructive techniques in 105 consecutive patients.

Acquired auricular deformities may diminish facial esthetics and cause psychological distress. The aim of this article is to provide an overview of the type of injuries and applied reconstructive techniques in a large academic hospital in The Netherlands. A retrospective chart review was conducted for the last 105 patients who underwent auricular reconstruction for an acquired deformity. Data concerning gender, affected side, cause of injury, anatomical region, the previous and further surgeries, type of cartilage, and skin cover used were collected and analyzed. 105 patients were included. Acquired auricular deformities were mainly caused by bite injuries (22 %), traffic accidents (17 %), burns (9.5 %), and post-otoplasty complications (9.5 %). The upper third of the auricle was most often injured (41 %), followed by the entire auricle (19 %). 70 % of cases required reconstruction with costal cartilage. The most common form of cutaneous cover was a postauricular skin flap (40 % of cases). This study gives a complete overview of causes and treatment of acquired auricular deformities. The results are comparable with the results of similar studies found in literature. Bite wounds are the leading cause of acquired auricular injuries. The upper third is most commonly affected. In the largest percentage of reconstructions, costal cartilage and a postauricular flap were used to correct the deformity.

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