Advertisement

Anthropometry in Ethnic Groups and Cultural and Geographical Diversity

Auricular Anthropometry of Newborns: Ethnic Variations
  • Wee Bin Lian
Chapter

Abstract

The human ear is important not just for its aesthetic value and hearing ability, but also helps to confer normality to a newborn. Developmental abnormalities can result in abnormal ear shape and size. Descriptive examination must therefore be supplemented by objective anthropometric measurements, to aid a complete diagnosis profile. Ethnic and race variations are well known to have an impact on various anthropometric measurements. The ear is likely to be no different. However, comparisons of ear measurements in different ethnic groups have been difficult and rarely carried out. Differences in methodologies and definitions have also made comparisons of reported studies challenging. Nevertheless, just as gestation is an important consideration when making such measurements, so is the ethnicity of the baby. Ear length by convention is most often defined as the maximum length measured from the superior to the inferior aspect of the external ear. By and large, the Caucasian ear appears to have a marginal edge on the Asian ear, with the Israeli and Turkish babies registering the longest ears. The impact of even minor differences in ethnicity is further realized in seeing that even Chinese of different historical roots may have different measurements, with the Hong Kong Chinese ear being somewhat smaller than the Taiwanese and Singaporean Chinese ear. Also interestingly, the longest ear need not necessarily be the widest ear. Ear width is defined as the transverse distance from the palpable anterior base of the tragus through the external auditory canal to the margin of the helical rim at the widest point. For this, the Japanese ear is supreme. Another aspect would be the placement of the ear which changes as the child grows. The few studies that evaluated this aspect of the ear concurred that it was normal to have at least a third of the ear above the intercathial medial line across the eyes, with the Asian ear appearing to be somewhat higher placed than the Caucasian ear. Knowing the size, shape and position of the normal ear lends more weight to terms such as microtia (small ear), macrotia and low-set ears, allowing the practicing clinician to pinpoint abnormalities and effect investigations and interventions more accurately, reducing unneeded parental anxiety.

Keywords

External Auditory Canal Inferior Aspect Transverse Distance Interracial Marriage Superior Attachment 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Abbreviations

EL

Ear length

EW

Ear width

IMCL

Intermedial canthial line

References

  1. Aase JM, Wilson AC, Smith DW. Small ears in Down’s syndrome: a helpful diagnostic aid. J Pediatr. 1973;82:845–7.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Adeyemo AA, Omotade OO, Olowu JA. Facial and ear dimensions in term Nigerian neonates. East Afr Med J. 1998;75:304–7.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Agnihotri G, Singh D. Craniofacial anthropometry in newborns and Infants. Iran J Pediatr. 2007;17:332–8.Google Scholar
  4. Awwad JT, Aza GB, Karam KS, Nicolaides KH. Ear length: a potential sonographic marker for Down syndrome Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 1994;44:233–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Behrman RE, Kliegman RM, Jenson HB. In: Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 17th edn. Philadelphia: WB Saunders; 2004. p. 2135.Google Scholar
  6. Butler MG, Brunschwig A, Miller LK, Haerman RJ. Standards for selected anthropometric measurements in males with the fragile X syndrome. Pediatrics. 1992;89:1059–62.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Chou CT, Tseng YC, Tsai FJ, Lin CC, Liu CS, Peng CT, Tsai CH. Measurement of ear length in neonates, infants and preschool children in Taiwan. Acta Paediatr Tw. 2001;43:40–2.Google Scholar
  8. Clark RD, Eteson DJ. In:Taeusch HW, Ballard RA, Avery ME, editors. Schaffer & Avery’s Diseases of the Newborn. 6th edn. Philadelphia:WB Saunders; p. 164, 177–8.Google Scholar
  9. Cortés MF, Guerrero MMV, Felices VP, Carrenard LJR, Sánchez MJ. [Anthropometric data on newborn infants: comparative study of two ethnic groups]. An Esp Pediatr. 1992;37:399–401.Google Scholar
  10. Dawei W, Guozheng Q, Mingli Z, Farkas LG. Differences in horizontal, neoclassical facial canons in Chinese (Han) and North American Caucasian populations. Aesth Plast Surg. 1997;21:265–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. el-Shanti H, al-Lahham M, Batieha A. Craniofacial anthropometric measurements in a population of normal Jordanian newborns. J Med Liban. 2000;48:23–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Farkas LG, Forrest CR, Litsas L. Revision of neoclassical facial canons in young adult Afro-Americans. Aesth Plast Surg. 2000;24:179–184.Google Scholar
  13. Farkas LG, Katic MJ, Forrest CR. International anthropometric study of facial morphology in various ethnic groups/races. J Craniofac Surg. 2005;16:615–46.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Farkas LG, Posnick JC, Hreczko TM. Anthropometric growth study of the ear. Cleft Palate-Craniofac J. 1992;29:324–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Feingold M, Bossert WH. Normal values for selected physical parameters: an aid to syndrome delineation. Birth Defectes Org Artic Ser. 1974;10:1–16.Google Scholar
  16. Fok TF, Hon KL, So HK, Wong E, Ng PC, Chang A, Lau J, Chow CB, Lee WH, the Hong Kong Neonatal Measurements Working Group. Normative Data of Penile Length for Term Chinese Newborns. Biol Neonate. 2005;87:242–5.Google Scholar
  17. Fok TF, Hon KL, So HK, Wong E, Ng PC, Lee AKY, Chang A. Auricular anthropometry of Hong Kong Chinese babies. Orthod Craniofac Res. 2004;7:10–4.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Fok TF, Hon KL, So HK, Wong E, Ng PC, Lee AKY, Chang A. Craniofacial anthropometry of Hong Kong Chinese babies: the eye. Orthodont Craniofac Res. 2003;6:48–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gilsanz V, Skaggs DL, Kovanlikaya A, Sayre J, Loro ML, Kaufman F, Korenman SG. Differential effect of race on the axial and appendicular skeletons of children. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1998;83:1420–7.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Golalipour MJ, Haidari K, Jahanshahi M, Farahani RM. The shapes of head and face in normal male newborns in South-east of Caspian Sea (Iran-Gorgan). J Anat Soc India. 2003;52:28–31.Google Scholar
  21. Golalipour MJ, Heydari K. Effect of the ethnic factor on cranial capacity and brain weight of male newborns in Northern Iran. Neuroembryol Aging. 2004/2005;3:146–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Golbus MS, Conte FA, Daentl DL. Deletion from the long arm of chromosome 4 (46, XX, 4q-) associated with congenital anomalies. J Med Genet. 1973;10:83–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hall JG, Froster-Iskenius UG, Allanson JE. In: Handbook of normal physical measurements. New York: Oxford University Press; 1989. p. 162, 166.Google Scholar
  24. Horowitz S, Morishima A, Vinkka H. The position of the external ear in Turner’s syndrome. Clin Genet. 1976;9:333–40.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hull C Hagerman RJ. A study of the physical, behavioral and medical phenotype, including anthropometric measures, of females with fragile X syndrome. Am J Dis Child. 1993;147:1236–41.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Itoh I, Ikeda M, Sueno K, Sugiura M, Suzuki S, Kida A. Anthropometric study on normal human auricle in Japan (Japanese). Nippon Jibiinkoka Gakkai Kaiho. 2001;104:165–74.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Jones KY. In: Smith’s recognizable patterns of human malformation. 6th edn. Philadelphia: WB Saunders; 2006. p. 160–1, 280–1, 290–1, 646, 897–9.Google Scholar
  28. Kalcioglu MT, Toplu Y, Ozturan O, Yakinci C. Anthropometric growth study of auricle of healthy preterm and term newborns. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2006;70:121–7.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Le T, Farkas LG, Ngim RCK, Levin LS, Forrest CR. Proportionality in Asian and North American Caucasian faces using Neoclassical facial canons as criteria. Aesth Plast Surg. 2002;26:64–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Lian WB, Cheng MS, Tiong IH, Yeo CL. Auricular anthropometry of newborns at the Singapore General Hospital. Ann Acad Med Singapore. 2008;37:83–9.Google Scholar
  31. Lian WB, Lee WR, Ho LY. Penile length of newborns in Singapore. J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab. 2000;13:55–62.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Madjarova LM, Madzharov MM, Farkas LG, Katic MJ. In vivo facial tissue depth measurements for children and adults. Cleft Palate-Craniofac J. 1999;36:123–6.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. MedicineNet.com. Webster’s New World Medical Dictionary. Low set ears. Available at: http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=4203. Accessed 7 May 2007.
  34. Melnick M, Myrianthopoulos NC, Paul NW. External ear malformations: epidemiology, genetics and natural history. Birth Defects Orig Artc Ser. 1979;15:1–1x, 1–140.Google Scholar
  35. Merlob P, Sivan Y, Reisner SH. Anthropometric measurements of the newborn infant (27 to 41 gestational weeks). Birth Defects Orig Artic Ser. 1984;20:1–52.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  36. Patil A. 2007. Malformations of the external ear. Available at: http://www.thefetus.net/page.php?id=205. Accessed 7 May 2007.
  37. Pelz L, Stein B. Clinical assessment of ear size in children and adolescents (German). Padiatr Grenzgeb. 1990;29:229–35.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Peterson DM, Schimke RN. Hereditary cup-shaped ears and the Pierre Robin syndrome. J Med Genet. 1968;5:52–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Potter EL. A hereditary ear malformation transmitted through five generations. J Hered. 1937;28:255.Google Scholar
  40. Rogers BO. Microtic, lop, cup and pro- truding ears. Four directly inheritable deformities? Plast Reconstr Surg. 1968;41:208.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Saitta SC, Zackai EH. In: Taeusch HW, Ballard RA, Gleason CA, editors. Avery’s diseases of the newborn. 8th edn. Philadelphia: Elsevier Saunders; 2005. p. 197.Google Scholar
  42. Sanchez-Cascos A. The Noonan syndrome. Eur Heart J. 1983;4:223–9.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  43. Schumacher LB, Pawson IG, Green JR, Partridge JC, Kretchmer N. Ethnic variation in the size of infant at birth. Am J Hum Biol. 1990;2:695–702.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Shimizu T, Salvador L, Allanson J, Hughes-Benzie R, Nimrod C. Ultrasonographic measurements of fetal ear. Obstet Gynaecol. 1992;80:381–4.Google Scholar
  45. Sivan Y, Merlob, Reisner SH. Assessment of ear length and low-set ears in newborn infants. J Med Genet. 1983;20:213–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Tateishi H, Kaajii T. Physical parameters in Japanese newborns. Jpn J Hum Genet. 1992;37:223–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Thelander HE, Pryor HB. Abnormal patterns of growth and development in mongolism. An anthropometric study. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 1966;5:491–501.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Verloes A, Lesenfants S, Philippet B, Iyawa A, Laloux F, Koulischer L. Microcephaly, macrotia, unusual mimics and mental retardation syndrome: new syndrome or variant of De Lange type 2 syndrome. Genet Counsel. 1996;7:277–82.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  49. Wang J, Thornton JC, Russell M, Burastero S, Heymsfield S, Pierson RN Jr. Asians have lower body mass index (BMI) but higher percent body fat than do whites: comparisons of anthropometric measurements. Am J Clin Nutr. 1994;60:23–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Neonatal and Developmental MedicineSingapore General HospitalSingaporeSingapore

Personalised recommendations