For children, ears that stick out can be a source of teasing and embarrassment. Ear reshaping, also known as otoplasty, is a simple procedure normally performed on children at around the age of eight, but can also be performed on adults.
Otoplasty is generally used to correct ears which stick out too far from the head, but can also be used to correct ears that have failed to develop correctly. Ear reshaping surgery is usually performed under a general anaesthetic as day surgery.
Who is a candidate for ear reshaping surgery?
• People who have ears that stick out
• People who have a very large conchal bowl (inside the ear)
• People who are not happy with the general shape of their ears
• People whose ears have a cauliflower appearance (usually through contact sport)
An otoplasty procedure usually takes between one to two hours to perform, though it may take longer if the procedure is very complicated. The method used to perform the surgery on the ear will depend on the specifics of the problem.
Though there are a number of different approaches which address this procedure, the most common one involves the reshaping or removing of some of the cartilage behind the ear. After opening the back of the ear, Dr Tew will either remove some of the cartilage or fold it on to itself and stitch it together. Since the work is done on the back of the ear, any scars are usually faint and can be hidden in the creases. This procedure offers dramatic, immediate results that will last a lifetime.
When discussing any of these treatments with Dr Tew, it’s important to discuss your expectations and be mindful that the goal of any type of cosmetic surgery is improvement, not perfection.