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Home > Aesthetic Surgery > Ear Correction (Otoplasty)

Ear Surgery 'Otoplasty' overview

Ear surgery aka otoplasty is a cosmetic procedure to improve the shape, position or proportion of the ear. The many cause of misshapen ears range from birth defects to trauma and the many defects range from mild protrusion to complete absence of the ear. Ear surgeries are a group of procedures developed to correct the ear deformity on an individual basis. Each patients treatment has to customized according to the defect.

The ear is made up of cartilage in the center covered by skin on both sides. It is a complicated structure in its 3d orientation. Ear surgeries revolve around three concepts, cutting the cartilage, folding the cartilage and providing external cartilage tissue.

In cases of cartilage malformation such as cup ears, or stahl ears(bat ears) the cartilage is molded by either cutting or folding it as per the requirements.

In cases of serious deficiency of cartilage tissue, external cartilage tissue is required to reconstruct the ear to its full glory. Usually this cartilage is harvested from the ribs as in a case of absent ear or very small ear remnant aka 'microtia'.

Ear deformities

What are the benefits of Otoplasty ?

  • Ears are an important part of the face. Any abnormality is immediately noticeable. Correction of gross defect comes under reconstruction where as minor corrections and improvements from normal are called cosmetic procedures. though similar in approach both have different objectives.
  • Otoplasty can reshape Overly large ears — a condition called Macrotia.
  • Protruding ears occurring on one or both sides in varying degrees — not associated with hearing loss.
  • Adult dissatisfaction with previous ear surgery.

Who are the best candidates for Otoplasty ?

Depending upon the type of defect and age of presentation ear correction surgery can be done in children who are 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 and are able to communicate their feelings and do not voice objections when surgery is discussed.

Teenagers and adults should be healthy individuals who do not have a life-threatening illness or medical conditions that can impair healing, are nonsmokers and are Individuals with a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for ear surgery.

How is otoplasty surgery done ?

Minor defects can be treated in local anesthesia in adults where as major defects that require cartilage graft harvest are done under general anesthesia. Children are operated under general anesthesia.

A complete evaluation is required before the surgery. The surgeon will discuss all the pros and cons of the procedure and enumerate any limitations.

You are asked to come to the surgical suit at least 2 hours before the time slot alloted for surgery. It essential to come empty stomach if the procedure is planned under general anesthesia. Please carefully read and follow all the pre-operative instructions given to you at the time of appointment.

You will be given time immediately before the surgery to discuss any last minute doubts with the surgeon. Once you are ready, you will be taken to the operation theater.

When will I see the results ?

Immediately after the surgery a bandage is placed around the head covering the ear. Depending upon the surgery the bandage may be removed in a week or two. You will be able to appreciate the results as soon as the bandage is removed.

What are the risks and safety considerations ?

Like all surgical procedures there are risks related to the surgery, anesthesia and sutures. Please read the Otoplasty Informed Consent document thoroughly and completely to understand the risks involved.

What are the after procedure instructions and precautions ?

A dressing is placed over the ear for a week or two. Depending on the complexity of the procedure you will be explained the post operative instructions in detail. Please read and follow the post-procedure instructions carefully and completely.