WHAT IS EAR CORRECTION
Ear surgery, also known as otoplasty, can improve the shape, position or proportion of the ear. A defect in the ear structure that is present at birth or that becomes apparent with development can be corrected by otoplasty. This procedure can also treat misshapen ears caused by injury. Otoplasty creates a more natural shape while bringing balance and proportion to the ears and face. Correction of even minor deformities can have profound beneﬁts to appearance and self-esteem.
Pinning back the ears is known as an otoplasty or pinnaplasty. It’s usually done on children and young teenagers, although adults can also have it done.
Ear pinning surgery is not suitable for children younger than 5 because their ears are still growing and developing. At a very young age the ear cartilage is too soft to hold the stitches.
ADVANTAGES OF EAR CORRECTION
Repairs damaged ears, and makes prominent ears more proportionate. Following an ear procedure, people of all ages experience an improvement in self-esteem and feel more positive about their appearance.
- making a small cut behind the ear to expose the ear cartilage
- removing small pieces of cartilage if necessary
- putting stitches at the back of the ear to reshape or position it closer to the head
An otoplasty usually takes 1 to 2 hours. If local anaesthetic is used, you’ll be able to go home the same day.
You may need a bandage around your head to help your ears heal in their new position and protect them from infection.
Medications are administered for your comfort during the surgical procedure. The choices include local, intravenous sedation or general anesthesia.
Correction of protruding ears uses surgical techniques to create or increase the antihelical fold (just inside the rim of the ear) and to reduce enlarged conchal cartilage (the largest and deepest concavity of the external ear). Incisions for otoplasty are generally made on the back surface of the ear. When incisions are necessary on the front of the ear, they are made within its folds to hide them. Internal, no removable sutures are used to create and secure the newly shaped cartilage in place.
External stitches close the incision. Techniques are individualized, taking care not to distort other structures and to avoid an unnatural “pinned back” appearance.
Ear surgery offers near immediate results in cases of protruding ears, visible once the dressings that support the new shape of the ear during initial phases of healing are removed. With the ear permanently positioned closer to the head, surgical scars are either hidden behind the ear or well hidden within the natural creases of the ear.
THE BEST CANDIDATE FOR EAR CORRECTION
- Healthy, without a life-threatening illness or untreated chronic ear infections
- Generally 5 years old, or when a child’s ear cartilage is stable enough for correction
- Cooperative and follow instructions well
- Able to communicate their feelings and do not voice objections when surgery is discussed
Teenagers and adults who are good candidates for ear surgery are:
- Healthy individuals who do not have a life-threatening illness or medical conditions that can impair healing
- Individuals with a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for ear surgery