Otoplasty is a cosmetic surgical procedure performed to correct misshapen, asymmetrical, or protruding ears to improve facial symmetry and proportional facial balance. Prominent or misshapen ears can be a real source of significant emotional distress for both adults and children. Fortunately, this simple surgical procedure can often reshape the ears in a single procedure to enhance the overall cosmetic appearance of the ears.
What Causes Protruding Ears?
Ears may protrude from the head for two reasons:
The anti-helical fold fails to form during the growth of the ear; and/or
The conchal bowl (the part of the ear that forms a bowl) is enlarged.
At What Age Can A Child Have An Otoplasty Procedure Done?
A child can have an otoplasty procedure done between the ages of 5 and 6 when the ear is fully developed and before the child is about to start school. This timing is also important because it is when a child begins to develop self-esteem.
Who Is An Ideal Candidate For Otoplasty Surgery?
You may be interested in having otoplasty surgery if you have
Misshapen or malformed ear cartilage
Genetic earlobe deformities, such as earlobes with clefts or skin tags, or duplicate earlobes
Overly large ears
Structural ear malformations resulting from trauma or injury
Overly pinned ears from previous otoplasty surgery
Overly prominent ears projecting more than 2 cm from the side of the head
What Can You Expect During A Consultation?
During your consultation, Dr. Pero will examine your ears and develop a treatment plan. He will also discuss the otoplasty procedure, describing in detail the steps he’ll take to make your desired correction. This is the time for you to ask your questions, so you have a clear understanding of the procedure and have appropriate expectations.
How Is The Otoplasty Performed?
Otoplasty involves a careful analysis of the ear deformity itself and correction of the deformity or prominence either with or without an incision placed behind the ear (traditional vs. incisionless otoplasty). Permanent sutures are placed beneath the surface to help the ears maintain their new shape.
The goal of an otoplasty procedure, of course, is to bring the ears closer to the head and lessen any asymmetry between them while avoiding an unnatural or “pinned back” appearance.
Incisionless otoplasty is performed with sutures passed directly under the skin without a separate incision. This allows for less healing, no scarring and an excellent result in carefully selected patients. Eligibility for this procedure depends on each patient’s unique anatomy
How Long Does The Procedure Take?
Dr. Pero takes 60-90 minutes to perform the otoplasty depending upon the techniques required.
What Type Of Anesthesia Is Used For Otoplasty?
For children and teenagers, Dr. Pero performs the otoplasty using general anesthesia. For adults, he performs the procedure under local anesthesia with or without local sedation.
Is The Procedure Painful?
Most patients do not have significant pain or discomfort following otoplasty surgery. However, Dr. Pero may prescribe pain medication just in case it is needed.
Is Otoplasty Performed On An Outpatient Basis?
Yes, otoplasty is performed on an outpatient basis at our North Texas office location, surgery center or hospital.
What Can You Expect After Surgery?
After surgery, a headband is often used to help maintain the new shape for several weeks or months depending on each patient.
Generally, a removable elastic bandage is placed over the ears and patients keep it on day and night for the first week, post-surgery. For the following 7 days, patients will need to wear this bandage at nighttime only. At 10 days post-surgery, any remaining absorbable stitches will be removed.
Are There Any Aftercare Instructions To Follow?
For the first night after surgery, you should rest in bed and keep your head elevated with two pillows. You should also follow a bland diet the first night home, and take any medication as prescribed for pain and discomfort.
How Soon Can You Return To Normal Activities After Surgery?
Patients can return to work or school within 3-4 days after surgery and should avoid exercise for 2-3 weeks post-surgery.
Are There Any Complications Associated With Otoplasty Surgery?
As with any surgery, there is always a risk of complications–a reaction to anesthesia, bleeding, or a wound infection. On a rare occasion that a wound becomes infected, it is treated with an antibiotic. Asymmetries, sensitive ears, and suture extrusion are other rare complications as well.
Are Scars Visible After The Procedure?
In the appropriate candidate, the incisionless otoplasty provides an excellent result with no visible scarring. In patients undergoing traditional otoplasty, the incision is well-hidden behind the ear so there are no visible scars, especially after healing.
Dr. Pero is a double board-certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon, who has performed hundreds of cosmetic procedures.
Click here to view our photos of some of our patients “before and after” photos.
Dr. Pero is a surgeon you can trust:
He is trained and experienced in all facial plastic surgery procedures;
He operates only in accredited medical facilities;
He adheres to a strict code of ethics; and
He is board certified by The American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ABFPRS) and The American Board of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery (ABOto).
Click here to request your consultation with Dr. Pero.
If you are interested in Otoplasty, please call North Texas Facial Plastic Surgery at (214) 382-5100 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Pero.
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