Posterior auricular muscle

The posterior auricular muscle consists of two or three fleshy fasciculi, which arise from the mastoid portion of the temporal bone by short aponeurotic fibers. They are inserted into the lower part of the cranial surface of the concha.

Posterior auricular muscle
The muscles of the auricula
Auricula in context.
OriginMastoid Process
InsertionPosterior ear
ArteryPosterior auricular artery
NervePosterior auricular nerve of Facial nerve
ActionsPulls ear backward
Latinmusculus auricularis posterior
Anatomical terms of muscle

Post-auricular reflex

The post-auricular reflex is a vestigial muscle response in humans that acts to pull the ear upward and backward.[1] Research suggests neural circuits for pinna orienting have survived in a vestigial state for over 25 million years. It is often assumed the reflex is a vestigial Preyer reflex.[2]


  1. Benning, Stephen D. (2011-03-01). "Postauricular and superior auricular reflex modulation during emotional pictures and sounds". Psychophysiology. 48 (3): 410–414. doi:10.1111/j.1469-8986.2010.01071.x. ISSN 1469-8986. PMC 2962877. PMID 20636290.
  2. Hackley, Steven A. (2015-10-01). "Evidence for a vestigial pinna-orienting system in humans". Psychophysiology. 52 (10): 1263–1270. doi:10.1111/psyp.12501. ISSN 1469-8986. PMID 26211937.
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