All you need to Know about Ear Surgery

Ear Surgery

The shape, size or positioning of the ears can make a huge difference to whether a person has confidence in their appearance or not, and for many years people have been choosing to have ear reshaping surgery to increase their self-confidence. Ear reshaping surgery is also known as otoplasty and is a surgical procedure that is carried out to reduce the size of the ears, reshape the ears, or reset protruding ears so that they sit closer to the head. This very straightforward procedure can be carried out on both adults and children who feel their lives are being negatively affected by the appearance of their ears.


Characteristics of an Ideal Candidate


It is difficult to hide ears with clothing or other options. Therefore, people with ears that protrude more than they should, or are asymmetrical, disproportionate, flapping, or drooping too low, may feel embarrassed in a public setting. Therefore, otoplasty is a common cosmetic surgery procedure for such people. 


Whether it is a child who is constantly teased at school, or an adult who is uncomfortable and low on confidence due to the awkward shape of ears, or someone who has suffered trauma to the ears, may be a fabulous candidate who can use otoplasty to address their problem.


Some children are born with significant ear defects, and may make strong candidates for reconstructive otoplasty. Facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr. Yavrouian receives patients from Glendale, Pasadena, Burbank, Greater Los Angeles, Beverly Hills CA, and nearby areas for otoplasty.

Candidates for Traditional or Reconstructive Otoplasty


Ear pinning surgery, also known as traditional otoplasty, is suitable for candidates who have large or extruding ears. These ears can be ‘pinned’ back towards the patient’s head. This helps to create a more regular look that a person will feel is more normal and attractive.


For candidates with severe ear defects that may occur due to some kind of external trauma or are present by birth, reconstructive otoplasty may be more appropriate.

Child Candidates


Congenital ear defects in children may make them suitable candidates for otoplasty. A child candidate may usually require otoplasty around the age of six, when the ears have sufficiently developed to a size quite close to that of an adult. In any case, otoplasty for child candidates may be commonly performed between the ages of four and fourteen.


Children below the age of four may not be suitable candidates for otoplasty because the ears are still attaining growth. But conditions identified early can be manipulated more easily with younger ear tissue. If the child has a significant defect in ear shape or size, it is a sagacious idea to visit a surgeon to determine their viable candidacy.



    Increased self-confidence and self esteem

    Wider choice of hairstyles

    Stop unfriendly comments

    More choice in sports and careers


An incision is made behind the ear, where the ear is joined to the head. The surgeon then removes as much of the cartilage and skin as needed to achieve the desired effect. The surgeon may trim the cartilage, reshaping it and then pinning it back with permanent sutures to secure the cartilage. In other instances, the surgeon will not remove any cartilage at all, but may simply use stitches to reshape the cartilage permanently. Incisions and the resulting scars are well concealed on the back of the ear.


The ears have to be balanced so that they resemble one another. They will never be identical. In fact, one may protrude more than the other or be longer or narrower. Some of these factors have to do with the cartilage and skin available for reshaping. In general, a very pleasing appearance is produced. The protruding ears are closer to the sides of the head. Both women and men of all ages find that they are no longer inhibited by the appearance of the protruding ears. Hair styles are altered to show off the ears and hats that expose them are now worn proudly. There is a smile that lasts forever after this surgery.

Downtime and recovery

It is best to relax for the first 7-10 days.  Bruising is variable and usually located in and around the ears.  Seeing your best friends after 10 days is fine, but I recommend you wait at least 2 weeks before meeting new acquaintances.  After 2 weeks you will look presentable.  After 3 weeks you will look much better than before surgery, but you will have another 3-4 weeks for 50% of the swelling to subside.  It is not a good idea to exercise or increase your heart rate for 3 weeks from the time of surgery.  This will help to diminish your swelling and improve the rate at which you heal.  Likewise, you must keep away from contact sports to prevent the ears from being injured or bent for the first 3-6 months.

Although most of these conditions can appear as severe congenital defects, some people are just hate that their ears still too far out or are too big. These people are more likely to be traditional otoplasty candidates, but should talk to a surgeon to see if it's right for them.



Remember, otoplasty doesn't magically grant people new wonderful ears, so it’s important to take this procedure seriously and understand the realistic results and risks involved.

Sources: docshop.com, ejyfacialplastics.com, surgery.med.umich.edu, realself, artofplasticsurgery

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