CANDIDATES:Patients of all ages can benefit from otoplasty. It is often performed on children after the age of four; however, many adults opt to rectify life-long concerns. Patients in their 20s or 30s also may opt to have ear surgery to improve their inherited traits and self-image. Older patients might also have otoplasty since the ear and the earlobe can get bigger with age.
OBJECTIVE:The otoplasty procedure can be designed according to the problem. It is usually done to set prominent ears back closer to the head or to reduce the size of large ears. The problem can be done in one or both ears, but even when it is only in one ear, surgery is usually performed on both ears for a better balance.
INCISIONS AND TECHNIQUEThe technique will depend on the problem. The incision is performed behind the ear. It will leave a faint scar in the back of the ear that will fade with time. Stitches are usually dissolved in about a week.
OPERATING TIME40 minute to One hour.
ANESTHESIAUsually locally with sedation or general.
IN/OUT PATIENT:Usually outpatient.
RECOVERY PERIOD:There is usually no pain, just temporary discomfort, swelling, bruising.
RECOVERY:A head band or cap that covers the ears should be worn on the first week to avoid trauma, especially when sleeping. Any activity in which the ear might be bent should be avoided for a month or so.Back to school after a week. Exercising about 3 weeks. Bruising and swelling may take several weeks to disappear.
RISKS:Hematoma (accumulation of blood under the skin that may require removal), infection and reactions to anesthesia. Bleeding, slight asymmetry in healing or scarring.
DETAILS:Normal pre-operative exams. Antibiotics and pain killers will be prescribed for a week after surgery.