Birth defects are quite common around the world, some more than others. Every once in a while we see one that just catches our attention and makes us think back to whether or not we’ve seen it before. In this case, it appears to be a rare deformity that caused a baby born with ears under its chin. The image, taken from the popular photo site Imgur shows a newborn baby who was born with a few cranial birth defects, such as a deformed mouth and jawline, but more prominently the placement of the ears stands out.
The placement of the ears in this case is somewhat reminiscent of where gills would be on an aquatic animal, or fish. Perhaps they simply failed to migrate to the side of the head after they were formed. In the first trimester of pregnancy, the ears form along the jaw line out of cartilage. At some point during the second trimester the ears typically migrate to their correct place on the side of the head. This is the normal process that appears to have failed during the second trimester, which resulted in the low placement of the ears as well as the deformed jaw line. The Mayo Clinic states that by 18 weeks of gestation, a fetus should be able to hear, as well as have fully formed ears.
In the case of the child in this picture, it is not known if the child was born prematurely or if it survived post-birth. Details about when and where this child were born are still unclear, as not much information appears to be public aside from this picture.
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