Auricular emergenicies. Three years experience in a District General Hospital

Hippokratia 2003, 7(3):113-118

St Triaridis, Iord Konstantinidis, Ath Triaridis, N Benis, K Karagiannidis, G Kontzogloy
ENT Clinic, Hippokratio General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece


The auricle has a significant contribution in the symmetry and aesthetic appearance of the face. Traumatic disfiguring injuries of the auricle often have a significant post-traumatic psychologic distress. Treatment of traumatic and infectious conditions of the auricle concerning the exact reconstruction of the anatomical details is challenging for the surgeon. Different locations and extent of auricular injuries and infections demand different therapeutic strategies. The insufficient treatment results in mostly difficult secondary conditions. During a 3 years period (1998-2001) 202 patients with external ear injuries, 17 patients with auricular haematomas and 195 patients with auricular inflammations were treated by the ENT department of Hippokratio General Hospital concerning the 1,1% of all ENT emergencies. In the group of patients with auricular injuries the aesthetic result after surgical reconstruction was very good in 195 patients with complete preservation of all anatomical structures of the auricle. Only 7 patients had disfiguring result because of large missing parts or necrotic areas of the auricle. In the management of 27 auricular haematomas, 18 patients were treated with drainage and tied bandage and 9 patients with drainage, suturing with splints from a folley catheter and bandage. The group of patients with suturing of the auricle, had significantly decreased need in days for tied bandage, a fact which significantly improves patient’s quality of life. Inflammatory conditions of the auricle were treated with iv antibiotics and drainage in cases of abscesses. All patients had complete recovery without secondary auricular deformity. Surgeons have to preserve all anatomical structures of the auricle in order to avoid the development of significant post-traumatic psychologic distress.