Also known as an ear tuck or ear pinning, otoplasty reshapes ears to make them less prominent. With children, general anesthesia is used, whereas with teenagers and adults, local anesthesia or regional anesthesia can be used. Surgical scarring is typically concealed behind the ear, and the outpatient procedure takes 1 to 2 hours.
Who is a candidate?
Candidates for otoplasty can be adults, teenagers, or children over the age of 5 that are healthy and have realistic expectations about the range of cosmetic outcomes. Generally, they are unhappy with the prominence of their ears and would like to improve their self-image.
Who is not a candidate?
Candidates who have untreated chronic ear infections or other illnesses that impair healing are not good candidates for otoplasty. Smokers are also not good candidates, as smoking can cause blood thinning, resulting in a longer or more problematic recovery.
Like other surgeries, an otoplasty requires certain general surgery procedures such as preoperative blood testing, medications, and cessation of smoking or use of pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs.
Pain and discomfort may occur immediately after surgery, but can be controlled with regular over-the-counter pain reliever medications. Bandages may cause itching, but should be kept on for proper healing post-surgery. After about a week, most patients will make a full recovery.
Complications are possible with any plastic surgery, though they are rare with otoplasty. As with any surgery, there is risk of complications related to infection or reaction to anesthesia. A proper assessment of every patient, along with complete lab work, will help to prevent postoperative complications. After healing, scars are handled with special treatments to minimize their appearance.
Average US cost