Otoplasty, also known as ear reshaping surgery or ear pinning surgery, is a cosmetic procedure to improve the appearance of the ears by adjusting their position, shape, and size. The goal of this procedure is to create a more balanced and aesthetically pleasing look for the face and head.
Who Can Get An Otoplasty?
Often times prominent ears can leave people feeling self-conscious. Unfortunately, young children may get bullied because of the ears. Even into adulthood, patients may have difficulty exposing their ears, and try to use their hair to cover up their ears. Many of our patients also complained of wearing glasses because of the ill-fit.
The otoplasty or “pinning” ears can set the ear back in a natural way. This procedure is typically performed on children; however, many adults choose to have this procedure. Otoplasty procedures for children are usually done between 5-8 years while under general anesthesia.
How Is Otoplasty Performed?
Our technique involves placing an incision behind the natural crease of the ear. The back of the cartilage is then exposed after the skin is elevated. From there an assessment is done and if determined there is cartilage excess then a portion is removed. The set back sutures are then placed, and the back of the ear is tacked down to the mastoid fascia.
Next, the shape of the ear is then recreated with additional mattress sutures. That portion of the ear is called the antihelix. The technique to recreate the antihelix is called Mustardé sutures. The procedure can be performed under local or twilight anesthesia in the vast majority of cases for adults.
What Is Incisionless Otoplasty?
In mild cases, the ear can be corrected without an incision but rather by percutaneous placement of sutures to recreate the antihelical fold. However, cartilage excess would not be able to be addressed, so you would need to be examined for the appropriate technique.
Incisionless otoplasty can be done under local anesthesia. The molding sutures can be placed percutaneously and tied underneath the skin, so that no incision needs to be made.
Post-Op Recovery From Otoplasty
After the surgery, a large protective dressing is applied and kept on for 5-7 days. Then, the dressing will be removed and if the wounds look stable, adults and children are then given a headband to be worn day and night for 2 weeks. After that, the headband need only be worn at night for an additional 4-6 weeks.
Incisionless otoplasty patients will also need to wear a headband for 4-6 weeks.
The purpose of the headband is to protect the ears during healing from abrupt changes in position during the critical early healing period.
If you live in or around the greater Chicago area and would like to see if you are an Otoplasty candidate, call our office today to schedule a consultation with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons: Dr. Rajendra Shah or Dr. Samir Shah. Call 708-424-3999 or contact us online.
Do you live in or around Orland Park or Oak Lawn and are ready for an Ear Pinning consultation?