Anthropometry Of The Outer

Anthropometrists, dealing with the measurement of size, weight and proportions of the human body, also introduced some anatomical landmarks for the

Fig. 3.6 Example of a pinna without the lower part of the scapha.

outer ear to be used for calculating its dimension. These are otobasion superius (obs), otobasion inferius (obi), which are the upper and lower points at which the pinna is attached to the scalp (Fig. 3.7). The line joining obs and obi is called the base of the ear. The other points are superaurale (sa) and subaurale (sba), which allow the measurement of the so-called 'physiognomic length', and preaurale (pra) and postaurale (pa), which are used to measure the 'physiognomic breadth' of the pinna. Both measurements are usually taken by the anthropologist using a special calliper.3 Among the data gathered by different authors on large samples of the population are the average larger dimensions of the pinna in males compared to females. Another interesting phenomenon observed by various researchers is the constant increase of both measurements, particularly of length, during a subject's life.3,7 Especially after the age of 50 there is a further increase which has to be correlated with various factors such as the flattening of the anthelix and the reduction of curling of the helix, but also the decrease of skin elasticity and the particular growth of the ear lobe. In addition the appearance of creases in the front of the tragus and the growth of hair on the external meatus are considered good parameters for judging a subject's age.

Ear Lobe Landmarks

Fig. 3.7 The anatomical landmarks of the outer ear. obs = otobasion superius; obi = otobasion inferius; pra = preaurale; sa = superaurale; sba = subaurale; pa = postaurale; tu = Darwin's tubercle.

Fig. 3.7 The anatomical landmarks of the outer ear. obs = otobasion superius; obi = otobasion inferius; pra = preaurale; sa = superaurale; sba = subaurale; pa = postaurale; tu = Darwin's tubercle.

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