Otoplasty is a surgery of the ears that is done to give proper shape and size to your ears. It is also done to correct the structural damage or abnormality of the ears. The surgery is referred to as cosmetic surgery of the ears and the surgery is mostly done on the outer ear called the auricle. The auricle is made of cartilage under the skin. Sometimes, the cartilages do not develop properly. In such cases, otoplasty can be done to correct the size, shape, and position of the ears.
Different types of Otoplasty
Otoplasty is of several different types. The main types of otoplasty are:
Ear Augmentation: In some people, the size of the ears is smaller than the normal size of the ears. This may occur due to improper development of the ears during the growing years. In such cases, otoplasty may be done to increase the size of the ears.
Ear Pinning: It is a type of otoplasty in which ears are drawn closer to the head. It is suitable for people whose ears stick out prominently from the sides of the head.
Ear reduction: If the size of the ears is larger than the normal size then this type of surgery is required. This type of otoplasty is done to reduce the size of the ears.
Causes of prominent ears
The normal angle at which an outer ear is placed is 20-30 degrees to the side of the head. If the angle is greater than 30 degrees, the ears will appear unnatural as the ears will stick out. This may happen due to genetic factors. The cartilage growth may be affected by other medical conditions or the shape of the ears may be distorted due to an injury. One or both ears of a person may get affected. The large size of the ears does not affect the ability of hearing. Prominent ears may be seen in the members of the same family.
Different techniques used for otoplasty
Different techniques can be used for reducing the size of the ears. The main techniques used include the following:
Ear Moulding or Splinting: It is a safe and simple procedure and is mostly used for infants. This procedure is done when the cartilage is soft and when an infant reaches the age of 6-7 weeks the cartilage becomes stiff. During the procedure, the doctor uses a splint to give proper shape to the cartilage. The splint used supports the ear and keeps it in a new position.
The splint is fixed to the ear using surgical tape. The splint should be kept in place for 24 hours a day and have to bring the child to the surgeon for regular check-ups. The cartilage will become hard to remodel within 6 months and at this point, the doctor will perform surgery.
Who are the best candidates for otoplasty?
Otoplasty is a surgery that is usually done to correct the size and shape of the ears. It is suitable for people who have:
Ears protruding from the head
Have larger or smaller ears than the normal
Have an abnormal shape of the ears due to damage, injury, or structural issues from birth.
It is recommended for individuals who are 5 years old or older than that
Should have overall good health and should not suffer from any other health problem as that will increase the risk of complications and will delay healing
The procedure of the surgery
Let us see what you will experience before, during, and after otoplasty surgery.
You should fix an appointment with a certified and experienced cosmetic surgeon for otoplasty. CARE Hospitals have a team of experienced and trained cosmetic surgeons who have performed millions of surgeries.
When you visit for the first consultation, the doctor will take your medical history. So, if you are taking any medications, you must tell the doctor. You should also tell if you are suffering from any other medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart diseases, etc.
The surgeon will check the shape, size, and position of your ears and may take pictures and measurements.
The doctor will discuss the details of the procedure and will also inform you about the cost, benefits, and risks associated with otoplasty. He will also ask you about your expectations for the procedure.
If you have any queries, do not feel shy and you can ask any number of questions to the doctor to get complete information about the procedure.
The procedure can be done in the outpatient department. It may take one to three hours to complete the procedure depending on the type of the surgery and other factors.
The nurse will give you local anaesthesia before commencing the procedure. In some patients, general anaesthesia is administered.
The surgeon will make an incision either at the back of the ear or inside the folds of the ear. The surgeon will then rearrange the tissues of the ear and it will include removing cartilage, folding, and reshaping the cartilage using stitches or grafting of the cartilage of the ear.
After this, the surgeon will close the incision with stitches
After the procedure
After the procedure is complete, the surgeon will place dressings over the ears. Make sure that the dressing remains clean and dry. The doctor will also recommend you follow the given instructions for quick wound healing and recovery.
Do not touch or scratch your ears
Sleep in a position where you do not have to rest on your ears
You should wear clothes that are easy to wear such as button-up shirts and avoid clothing that has to be pulled over your head.
You may experience pain, redness, swelling, bruising, and numbness for a few days. The dressing will stay in place for a week. Once the dressing is removed you have to wear an elastic headband for 4-6 weeks.
Risks associated with otoplasty
Like any other surgery, otoplasty is also associated with certain risks. The risk associated with otoplasty includes the following:
Side effects of anaesthesia
Excess bleeding from the site
Infection at the incision site
Scarring at or around the incision site
If you cannot find answers to your queries, please fill out the enquiry form or call the number below. We will contact you shortly