Ear Pinning and Reshaping (Otoplasty)
Overly prominent or irregularly shaped ears can be a cause of low self-esteem and dissatisfaction with one’s appearance. Children in particular may be subjected to cruel taunts about this feature from other kids. Fortunately, ear surgery (otoplasty) can help to address many common concerns, including the size, shape, and angle of the ears. Both younger and older patients can benefit from this procedure, which typically has a very high satisfaction rate. At Hankins & Sohn Plastic Surgery Associates, our board certified plastic surgeons can help you (or your child) achieve an outcome that enhances your appearance and improves your confidence.
To learn more about ear reshaping and ear pinning surgery, please contact our plastic surgery practice today. We can answer your questions or help you to schedule a complimentary consultation with our experienced plastic surgeons.
Ear Surgery Candidates
Generally speaking, patients should wait until the ear structures have matured before undergoing otoplasty, which usually occurs by age five or six. While cartilage can continue growing throughout life, the increase in size should be minimal after this point. Besides age, factors that determine candidacy include the desire to change the prominence, shape, or size of the ears. During your initial complimentary consultation, you can discuss your goals with our skilled surgeon, who will determine if this approach is right for you.
Ear Pinning and Reshaping Procedure
Every treatment plan is customized to suit the unique anatomic needs and cosmetic goals of the individual. General anesthesia is often used with younger children while local anesthesia may be sufficient for older children and adults. To address prominent ears, typically a small incision will be made in the natural fold behind the ear and a small section of cartilage will be removed to adjust the ear angle closer to the head. Excess skin also can be trimmed and cartilage can be reshaped as needed to help achieve the desired outcome. Permanent or temporary stitches may also be utilized to hold the ears closer to the head.
The recovery experience following ear surgery will depend largely on the technique used during the procedure. In most cases, downtime should be minimal. Older children and adults should be able to return to work within a few days. Younger children, however, may need a few extra days to recover. It’s important for young patients to understand that the ears will be healing for a while, and they should be monitored during play to avoid the risk of injury. A bandage or headband may be worn at night for one-to-two weeks to help preserve the results. Any further instructions pertinent to your unique experience will be provided during your consultation and at follow-up appointments.
If you have additional questions about ear surgery, or if you would like to schedule a complimentary consultation, please contact us today.