Otoplasty (ear surgery) can improve the appearance of prominent or oversized ears by repositioning or restoring symmetry. Ears that protrude can be adjusted to lie flatter against the head, and ears that are smaller than desired or underdeveloped can be rebuilt, helping to increase a patient’s confidence.
Candidates for otoplasty are unhappy with the natural size or shape of their ears. They may also have experienced an injury to the ear that has altered the shape. Otoplasty can also:
- Pin prominent ears
- Repair damaged earlobes
- Restore facial balance
Candidates should be in good general health and have realistic expectations. Ear surgery can also be performed on young children, usually starting around age four.
Ear surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure, and general anesthesia is typically used to ensure patient safety and comfort. The incisions are placed behind or inside the ear depending on the type of correction needed. Soft tissue and cartilage are removed, and the natural ear folds may be constructed using existing cartilage, if necessary.
Earlobe repair corrects damage that has occurred to the earlobe. This is usually the result of heavy jewelry or gauges that stretch the earlobes. Small incisions are placed around the earlobes, and excess tissue is removed. The remaining tissue is repositioned and stitched together for a natural-looking earlobe.
Ear surgery recovery is typically about one week. You may experience some swelling of the ears during this time. It is advised that you keep your head elevated during your recovery and limit excess physical activity.
You will be able to see the final results of your ear surgery approximately two weeks after your procedure. Otoplasty results are typically permanent unless the ear suffers an injury that could change the shape.
Ear surgery can utilize techniques that minimize visible scarring. Any scarring that does develop will likely fade over time.