Dr. Kulbersh looking into the ear of a patient in Birmingham, AL

The expert physicians of Pediatric ENT Associates are experienced in the treatment and management of congenital ear anomalies. Congenital, meaning present at birth, anomalies range from anotia, or the complete absence of an external ear, to varying degrees of microtia, or deformity of the ear. Microtia and anotia are often accompanied by atresia, which is the absence or deformation of the external ear canal.

The doctors of Pediatric ENT Associates understand that you have questions and concerns when your child is born with an anomaly of one or both ears. To remedy any potential hearing or other problems as quickly as possible, it is vital to see a pediatric ENT specialists with experience in these congenital anomalies as soon as is feasible.


Microtia is an anomaly in which the pinna, or external ear, is deformed in some way. Microtia can range from a mere skin tag where the ear should be to a minor deformity of the helical folds. Severe microtia often occurs together with atresia, so hearing should be tested as soon as is feasible, especially if it occurs in both ears.


Anotia is a very rare condition in which the outer ear is completely missing. Anotia is almost always accompanied by atresia, and both anotia and microtia may occur in conjunction with other congenital conditions such as Treacher-Collins syndrome.

Treatments for Microtia and Anotia

Children born with congenital anomalies such as microtia or anotia often benefit from bone-conductive hearing aids. The earlier hearing aids are fitted, the better chance the child has of developing speech and language skills at a normal rate. Assessment of your child’s hearing should be done by a team of skilled pediatric ENT specialists and audiologists.

Reconstruction of the outer pinna can be done starting at age 6 in the case of both bilateral and unilateral anomalies. Reconstruction of the pinna as well as the canal is a long process done in stages, but eventually, the entire structure can be completely restored.

Learn more about microtia and anotia at cdc.gov.

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Schedule an Appointment with Our Pediatric ENT Specialists

If your child has congenital ear anomalies, schedule an appointment with the expert doctors of Pediatric ENT Associates by contacting us at (205) 831-0101.