Ear canal

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Template:Infobox Anatomy Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]


The ear canal (external auditory meatus, external acoustic meatus), is a tube running from the outer ear to the middle ear. The human ear canal extends from the pinna to the eardrum and is about 26 mm in length and 7 mm in diameter.

Size and shape

The human ear canal is approximately 26 mm long and 7 mm in diameter. Size and shape of the canal vary among individuals. This is an important factor to consider when fitting hearing protectors.


The ear canal, because of its relative exposure to the outside world, is a common victim of diseases and other disorders. Some disorders include:


Earwax, also known as cerumen, is a yellowish, waxy substance secreted in the ear canals. It plays an important role in the human ear canal, assisting in cleaning and lubrication, and also provides some protection from bacteria, fungi, and insects. Excess or impacted cerumen can press against the eardrum and/or occlude the external auditory canal and impair hearing.


Additional images

External links

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