Prominent ears are a congenital cosmetic deformity that can have severe behavioral and emotional effects on children. Otoplasty refers to surgical procedures done on the ear to give it a more naturally anatomic appearance. Prominent ears don’t generally affect the self-image of the child before they reach six years of age, but in some cases, it is best to perform the procedure at an earlier age, since the ear cartilage has not yet hardened at that point.
Otoplasty is helpful for correcting ears that protrude over 20mm at an angle greater than 35 degrees from the patient’s occipital scalp. The surgery can also be used to manage one or multiple deformed regions of the ear.
This procedure is generally done on both the ears to maintain symmetry. Please note that otoplasty does not change the location of the ears or alter your ability to hear.
Are You an Ideal Candidate for the Treatment?
You can consider coming in for otoplasty if:
• Your ears stick out too far from the head
• Your ears are large in proportion compared to the rest of your head
• An area of your ear is malformed or disproportionate
Otoplasty is not recommended for patients with unrealistic expectations. The patient must receive proper preoperative counseling. During a consultation, the surgeon will discuss existing facial asymmetries and emphasize the need for restoring the anatomical balance of the face.
Your Otoplasty Consultation
As part of your consultation with the plastic surgeon, he will review your medical history and ask you questions about your current and past medical conditions. Special attention will be paid to any ear infections you might have had in the recent past. The surgeon will also ask you about any medications you are on, as well any other surgeries you have had recently.
Your surgeon will perform a thorough physical exam, examining your ears to determine the best treatment option. He will take a detailed look at the ears and note the placement and size, along with the shape and symmetry. He might also take pictures of your ears from all angles for medical records.
It’s important to discuss your expectations with your surgeon. He will want to know what you are hoping for in terms of appearance and will ensure that you understand the potential complications associated with the procedure.
How Do You Prepare for the Surgery?
Before the surgery, you might need to:
• Stop smoking, as smoking decreases the blood flow to your skin and delay the healing process
• Avoid medications like aspirin and other herbal supplements and anti-inflammatory drugs that can increase bleeding
• Arrange for assistance during recovery. Make sure that you have someone to drive you home after the surgery and stay with you during the first night of the recovery.
How Is the Procedure Performed?
Otoplasty techniques tend to vary based on the kind of correction you are looking for. The technique will determine the location of your incisions. The surgeon might make incisions within the inner crease or on the back of your ears. Once the incisions are made, the surgeon will remove any excess skin and cartilage. He will then alter the cartilage and secure folded cartilage with the help of internal stitches.
Get In Contact with Our Office
Dr. Burke Chegar, a skilled medical professional who is double-board-certified in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and Otolaryngology, will be happy to meet for an otoplasty consultation. To schedule your consultation, get in contact with our office.