Earlobe creases are lines in the surface of the earlobe of a child or young adult. The surface is otherwise smooth.
The earlobes of children and young adults are normally smooth. Creases are sometimes linked with conditions that are passed down through families. Other genetic factors, such as race and earlobe shape, may also determine who develops earlobe creasing and when it occurs.
It is not uncommon to have one small abnormality in facial features, such as an earlobe crease. Most often, this does not indicate a serious medical condition.
In children, earlobe creases are sometimes linked with rare disorders. One of these is Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome.
When to Contact a Medical Professional
In most cases, the health care provider will notice earlobe creases during a regular checkup.
Talk to your provider if you are concerned that your child's earlobe creases may be linked to an inherited disorder.
What to Expect at Your Office Visit
The provider will examine your child and ask questions about medical history and symptoms. These may include:
- When did you first notice the earlobe creases?
- What other symptoms or problems have you also noticed?
Tests depend on the symptoms and appearance of the earlobe creases.
Graham JM, Sanchez-Lara PA. Principles of human biomechanics. In: Graham JM, Sanchez-Lara PA, eds. Smith's Recognizable Patterns of Human Deformation. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 51.
Haldeman-Englert CR, Saitta SC, Zackai EH. Chromosome disorders. In: Gleason CA, Juul SE, eds. Avery's Diseases of the Newborn. 10th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2018:chap 20.
Turnpenny PD, Elard S, Cleaver R. Patterns of inheritance. In: Turnpenny PD, Ellard S, Cleaver R, eds. Emery's Elements of Medical Genetics and Genomics. 16th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2022:chap 6.
Review Date 10/22/2022
Updated by: Charles I. Schwartz, MD, FAAP, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, General Pediatrician at PennCare for Kids, Phoenixville, PA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.