Otoplasty (Ear Surgery) Houston
Protruding or bat ear have a profound psychological effect on the growing
child. The correction of this deformity is called as otoplasty (ear correction)
or pinning back of the ears. This is a procedure that is done once the
growth of the ear cartilage is complete i.e. after the child is 6 years
old. This condition is ideally treated before it causes psychological
stress and trauma to the person.
Typically there are
3 main types
Pinnaplasty: It is most common type which decreases the angulation of the ear and
brings it closer to the head. It is a simple outpatient surgery where
excess cartilage from prominent ears can be removed.
Ear augmentation: It used to treat small or absent ears. This is a reconstructive procedure
using cartilage from other body parts for a more natural look.
Ear reduction: This procedure is used to reduce the size of huge ears and make them
It is always advisable to get the ear correction surgery done in childhood
(not before 6 years) because the cartilage is quite flexible in young
age and thus allows easy and better reshaping. The child also benefits
from psychological benefits, otherwise would have been teased by the peers.
Adults who are conscious of the appearance of their shape and size of
ears with realistic expectations also can undergo the surgery.
Before Ear Surgery
We will evaluate your medical history and will advise you with regards
to cessation of smoking and medications containing aspirin. The ears will
be examined, evaluated and photographed. It should be kept in mind that
the two ears are never symmetrical and some difference in their shape
is bound to stay. The angle between the ear and the head is calculated.
The areas that will be excised or reshaped are marked and digital photographs
taken in order to document the amount of improvement after surgery.
It can be performed under local or general anaesthesia. An incision is
made on the back of the ear in the crease and the cartilage is exposed.
The cartilage is modified (excised or reshaped) depending on the preop
plan. The angle between the ear and the head is reduced and permanent
stitches are used to retain the ear in the new position. The incision
is closed with stitches under the skin and a fluffy cotton dressing is
done. Bandage is placed on the ear to help in healing. The procedure takes
only a couple of hours.
Patients should be careful not to sleep on the sides for about 3 weeks.
The bandage should be retained for a couple of days after which a head
band will have to be worn for about 4 weeks.Pain and bruising near the
ear are expected but is controlled by medication. Normal activity can
be started in 2-3 days. The ear should not be pulled or stretched till
complete healing has taken place as relapses are possible due to the 'memory'
Incisions may be cleaned with dilute peroxide and coated with bactroban
cream as needed.
Increase activity as tolerated with no heavy exercise for two weeks.
After dressing is removed, wear a support band at least for three to six
weeks. The more it can be worn the first week, the better.
Signs of Hematoma
Painful extreme hardness or bleeding often accompanied by bruising, usually
unilateral causing asymmetry. Please call our office immediately and schedule
an appointment to see us.