The Ins and Outs of Ear Surgery (Otoplasty)

Do your ears stick out too far? Do you have a birth defect or an old sports injury? Maybe your ears are disproportionate to the rest of your features, or you need to have corrective surgery to fix issues from a previous surgery. Otoplasty is the perfect solution to alter your ears so that they are more proportionate with the rest of your features.  

What is Otoplasty?

Otoplasty refers to cosmetic ear surgery, allowing patients to alter the shape, position, or size of their ears. Otoplasty does not change the actual location of your ears or your hearing, so it is considered a cosmetic procedure that includes the resculpting of the ear fold, pinning the ears back closer to the head. Surgery is generally recommended for both ears to ensure best symmetry.

Who is a candidate?

Otoplasty can be an option for people of almost all ages. This procedure can be performed on younger individuals who have experience developmental issues with their ears. It can also be performed on older individuals who may have experienced an injury to the ear or are just unhappy with the look of their ears.

This procedure is a popular way to correct cauliflower ear, or perichondrial hematoma. Cauliflower ear is a common occurrence when athletes neglect to wear protective headgear, causing tissue damage within the ear from repeated battery. Blood clots kill off healthy cartilage, creating thick scar tissue that changes the shape of the ear, especially when new cartilage begins to grow.

What does the procedure entail?

Otoplasty is an outpatient procedure performed within our state-of-the-art surgical facility.
Depending on your case, you may require sedation (local anesthesia) or full general anesthesia. Incisions are typically made both behind the ears and in the inner ears. The cartilage is repositioned, excess cartilage and skin is removed, and then the ear is closed with internal and external stitches as necessary. Some stitches may require removal, but most will safely and easily dissolve on their own. The entire surgery only takes two to three hours for both ears, and you’ll be able to resume regular schedule within just a week.

After the surgery, you may experience some temporary bruising and swelling. Your ears will be bandaged for support and protection. It will take a few days for the swelling to go down. In some cases, additional procedures may be required in order to perfect the shape.

Trusting the professionals, like our team at Gulf Coast Facial Plastics, will greatly minimize risks like scarring, asymmetry from the healing process, and skin sensitivity. We will review your medical history and perform an in-office examination before discussing your treatment options. If you are interested in learning more or want to schedule a consultation, contact us today!