EAR PINNING (OTOPLASTY)
Otoplasty is plastic surgery for correcting big ears by reducing their shape, pulling backward wide-open ears, creating thus an external ear that is of natural proportions and in line with the face contours.
Another reason to undergo otoplasty is to correct the possible deformities of the pinna (external ear).
Such deformations are widely known as “cup ear” and “shell ear”. In the first case, the ear is very small while in the second the ear lacks the pinna and the natural refraction, and the ear has a flat appearance.
If you are experiencing one of the above-mentioned situations, then otoplasty is the solution to your problem.
The ear surgery can be carried out starting from the age of four. If the doctor notices that the growth process of the ears is complete, it is possible to plan an intervention. This intervention is more frequent among children, aiming at decreasing the chances of children being bullied in their social environment because of their deformed ears. Adults can also remodel their ears via this surgery and have a more natural, aesthetically enjoyable face.
As with every cosmetic surgery, it is important to be informed beforehand about the benefits and risks accompanying otoplasty. Getting informed is a crucial aspect in ensuring a high degree of success from the intervention.
A common otoplasty surgery lasts 45-60 minutes. A lot depends on the patient and the type of intervention to be carried out. Usually, a small piece of skin is removed from behind the ear in order to expose the cartilage. Then the ear is remodelled and the retroauricular cartilage is repositioned by overarching the ear behind the head. The stitches are used to keep the incision closed and also to keep the ear in its new position (in case this is part of the intervention in your specific case). Because of the place in which the incision is carried out, any post intervention scar is invisible.
Although you might have problems with only one ear, the surgeon can decide to intervene in both. This is done in order to ensure the best possible symmetry after the intervention. This is a common procedure which should not create any discomfort.
The age of the patient is often times the determining factor in deciding upon the type of the anaesthesia to be used during the otoplasty. For young patients general anaesthesia is usually used to put them to sleep during the whole surgery. Adults can choose local anaesthesia and stay awake but quiet and painless during the procedure.
In the beginning, your ears will hurt and swell. For this reason, the doctor will bandage them. Full bandaging is necessary for approximately 3-4 days, during which you won’t be able to drive due to limited hearing. The doctor will remove the bandage in your next appointment. You will be advised to use a smaller elastic bandage during the night for several weeks until your ears are fully recovered.
Before you go home, the doctor will advise you how to take care of your ears. The next appointment will be set and you will be advised to call our patient care number in case you experience any problem. The patient care line is available during 24 hours. In case you experience any problem, members of our staff will respond to you during both day and night.
It is recommended that you take a week off work to recover as an initial recovery period. In approximately six weeks you will be able to return to sports activities, including swimming.