Repairing Ear Deformities

Currently, up to 30% of births result in ear deformities. Of this number, 70% of the deformities stay the same or get worse as the baby grows. Through the use of the EarWell™ Correction System, Lurie Children's physicians can repair babies’ ear deformities without any surgery.

Type of Deformities

There are six types of major ear deformities, including: 

  • Stahl’s Ear: In this congenital ear deformity, the rim of the ear is flat. Sometimes referred to as “Spock Ears,” the deformity can vary in degree of severity.
  • Lidding: The superior limb of the ear is not developed and there is a collapse of the rim.
  • Conchal Crus: This is a less common ear deformity associated with a division of the mid portion of concha.
  • Helical Rim Deformity: This deformity involves a deficiency of skin and/or cartilage between the scapha and rim.
  • Lop Ear: In this situation, there is a folding over of the upper third or half of the ear and has some similarities to lidding deformities.
  • Prominent Ear: This is the most common ear deformity, and it is characterized by the projection of the mid rim out from the skull.

Evaluation & Treatment

Requiring no anesthesia, sedation or medication, this non-invasive system corrects ear deformities in just eight weeks. The procedure is completed within a few minutes without any discomfort for the infant.

If you feel that your child’s ear is deformed, you can make an appointment by calling 1.800.543.7362 (KIDS DOC®) at Lurie Children’s for your evaluation. The decision to seek evaluation and possible treatment should be made as early as possible, optimally before 6 weeks of age.

You will meet with a pediatric surgeon and other team members to determine the extent of the malformation and discuss the course of action and expectations.

A plastic EarWell™ (conformer) is applied to your child’s ear within days after your child’s birth. The conformer helps to correct the deformity and stays on for about six weeks.