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Do You Have This Small Hole Above Your Ear? Here’s The Reason

Discussion in 'Otolaryngology' started by Ghada Ali youssef, Feb 11, 2017.

  1. Ghada Ali youssef

    Ghada Ali youssef Golden Member

    Dec 29, 2016
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    When you walk into a crowd of people, there are a few things you’ll notice right away. What is everyone wearing? What color is their hair? How are they carrying themselves? Ears aren’t usually the first thing you worry about. Still, like a fingerprint, a person’s ears are unique. Some are big, some are small, some stick out, and then there’s the matter of earlobe size. What you may never have noticed is that some people have a small hole above their ear.

    Between 0.1 per cent and 0.9 per cent of the US and European population deal with this defect. But 2.5 per cent of Taiwanese and 10 per cent of people in some parts of Africa are found with this as well. The holes can appear either on one or both sides, but it’s mostly found on the right ear.

    By now you’re probably wondering why people are born with this. Did ear piercings mutate into a defect? Do these people have super-sonic hearing? Not quite.

    This hereditary birth defect goes by the name preauricular sinus. It was first documented in 1864 by doctor Van Heusinger. Not much information has emerged about the defect until evolutionary biologist and fish paleontologist Neil Shubin shared his idea. Shubin thinks that the hole could be an evolutionary remnant of fish gills.

    In his PBS show, Your Inner Fish, Shubin talks about other things that our water-dwelling ancestors gave us. “Now you might not think your body has a lot in common with a fish,” he said. “But I see a family resemblance.”

    Fish are not only the first creatures with bony skeletons including backbones and skulls, they’re also the first animals on earth. The timeline of species goes fish, amphibians, reptiles, mammals, which then developed into us – primates. Believe it or not, every animal on earth today is a descendant of an ancient fish. Even the nerves in the human head are the same as the basic wiring inside a fish.



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