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Some People Are Born With Tiny Holes Above Their Ears – And This Is Why

A very small percentage of people are born with tiny, barely visible holes above their ears.

They’re not strange fish people. Or aliens. Rather, they’re a tiny segment of the population who are born with something called a preauricular sinus.

In the UK, just under one per cent of people have them. In the US, the frequency is lower, and in Asia and parts of Africa, around four to ten per cent of people may be affected.

Simply put, the malformations are ‘nodules, dents, or dimples’ that are exposed anywhere around the external ear – specifically, where the ‘face’ and the ear cartilage meet.

The preauricular sinus is, technically, a hereditary birth defect that was first documented by a scientist called Van Heusinger in 1864. Usually they’re found on one side, but up to 50 per cent of people have them on both.

You might have noticed some people, who have a barely noticeable small hole, just at the top of their ear cartilage that meets their face. Believe it or not, they are not the signs of piercings or some other body modifications. Actually, such people have this type of hole from their birth, or it can be a natural mutation as well.

According to a study, only 0.1 percent of the population in the US are born with this difference. While in the UK, it is found to be 0.9 percent. Whereas in Asia and other parts of Africa, this count is between 4 to 10 percent.

This birth defect is actually called as preauricular sinus, that was first documented in 1864 by Van Heusinger. According to one evolutionary biologist, Neil Shubin, these tiny holes could be an “Evolutionary remnant of fish gills.”