Otoplasty is a surgical reshaping of the outer ear in order to correct ear abnormalities and irregularities. This procedure is aimed at bringing balance to the entire face and improving a person’s appearance. Yes, it surgically modifies the protruding or deformed ears to bring balance and symmetry, without affecting the ability to hear. If you feel that your ears are a bit too conspicuous, Otoplasty is for you. This procedure is usually performed on children between the age group of four and fourteen. It’s never too late, though, to make a change and adults also undergo this surgery.
An incision is made at the back and probably in the front of the ear to expose the underlying cartilage. Through these incisions the excess cartilage and skin is removed. The surgeon will then fold the cartilage into the proper position and secure it with internal, non-removable stitches. Finally, if necessary, the ear is re-positioned more closely to the head and the incisions are closed with sutures.
You may need an Otoplasty if
- Your ears stick out too far from your head
- You have protruding ears that bend forward and down
- You have overly large ears
- You have elongated or stretched ear lobes
- You have excessive creases or wrinkles in earlobes
- Parts of the external ear are damaged or missing due to an accident, injury or from birth.
You are eligible for an Otoplasty if
- Protruding ears are a source of embarrassment and ridicule
- You have excellent general health without any untreated chronic ear infections
- You are cooperative and able to follow instructions well
- You have realistic expectations about the level of improvement you can expect
The Risks Involved
Like all other surgeries Otoplasty also carries some degree of risk. The complications include bleeding, skin numbness, abnormal scarring, infection in the cartilage, reaction to the anesthetics and a possibility of slightly lop-sided ears.
Once the surgical dressing is removed you will notice a dramatic improvement in the shape and contour of your ears. Moreover, as the ear is positioned closer to the head, the scars are either hidden behind the ear or within the natural creases of the ear.
Generally, it is recommended to have an Otoplasty at a young age as the cartilage is pliable enough to facilitate easy reshaping and also fosters psychological benefits in the child. Most of all, the child need not bear the torment of being ridiculed by peers.