Those born with overly prominent or protruding ears are often the target of teasing and cruel jokes. Ear surgery, also known as otoplasty, is a cosmetic procedure intended to correct the shape or size of the ears. Ear surgery may also be elected to reconstruct the ear following trauma, surgery or birth deformities.

Who Can Benefit From Ear Surgery?

  • Adults and children who feel self-conscious about the size or shape of one or both of their ears may benefit significantly from ear surgery.
  • Ear surgery is typically elected to correct protruding ears, but can also be used to modify overly large ears, known as macrotia, or reconstruct the ears following trauma.
  • If you are unhappy with the results of a previous corrective surgery, a second revisionary ear surgery may be elected to address your dissatisfaction.
  • The best candidates for ear surgery will possess good overall physical and emotional health, as well as realistic cosmetic expectations.

Ear Surgery In Orange County: What to Expect

  • Ear surgery is an outpatient surgical procedure typically performed in 1-3 hours. More complicated procedures may take longer. A general anesthesia will be administered prior to your procedure.
  • The nature of ear surgery varies, depending on the specific problems requiring correction. Incisions are typically made in the natural folds in front of or behind the ear to expose cartilage.
  • Excess skin and cartilage may be removed to alter the size or shape of the ears. Cartilage will be reshaped to restore symmetry and balance.
  • Permanent sutures will then be placed to maintain the new position of the ears. Incisions will be closed with fine stitches to minimize the appearance of scars.

What Happens After Ear Surgery?

  • You will need to wear a large compression bandage around your head for the first week. It may also be recommended that you wear a ski band for 1-2 months following surgery to avoid folding the ear.
  • Pain and discomfort is typically minimal following ear surgery. However, discoloration, bruising and swelling may be present on the ears for up to two weeks.
  • Most patients are able to resume work or school routines within a week of surgery. More strenuous activities may be restricted for several weeks.
  • Ear surgery will provide a permanent improvement to the appearance of the ears. In most cases, only one surgical procedure is needed to achieve optimal results.

Alternatives to Ear Surgery

  • Unfortunately, there are no viable alternatives to traditional ear surgery. Researchers are working to develop more effective treatments, although the ability to correct this problem non-surgically is limited.

Schedule Your Consultation

Dr. Mark E. Krugman is a board-certified plastic surgeon serving Santa Ana and Orange County. If you are interested in setting up a consultation for ear surgery with Dr. Krugman, please call our office at 714-972-1811.