Other Facial Procedures | Otoplasty

Other Facial Procedures: Otoplasty
(Ear Surgery)

Know everything about this technique:

In general, male ears are larger than female ears. A small male ear may look like an average female ear. But a big male ear will always be too large for feminine standards. Otoplasty is used to reduce the size of the ears and to correct a problem that affects both men and women: prominent ears.

What results should I expect from an otoplasty?
  • It reduces the size of the ears, both of the cartilage and of the ear lobe.
  • It reduces the projection of prominent ears when the angle they form with the head is too big. A normal angle would be of about 35º. A greater angle tends to be considered unaesthetic and some people may make fun of this.
  • It corrects the outline of the ear when they are turned down or when they are pointy.
  • It also corrects the earlobes when they have scars from previous face-lifts, when the earlobes are too big because of age or the use of heavy earrings, or ripped earring holes.
The Surgery

Local anesthesia and sedation.

How long will it take?
Between 45 and 90 minutes.

  • a) Size reduction: the surgeon makes a small incision and trims a portion of the cartilage that lies beneath the skin (the cartilage is what gives firmness and shape to the ear).
  • b) Reduction of prominent ears: the surgeon makes a small vertical incision on the back of each ear, he pulls the cartilage towards the head to reduce the projection, and he sutures with permanent stitches that will hold it in place.
  • c) Earlobe: if it is too big, it can be trimmed making an incision on its lower edge.
After the surgery

How long will I have to stay hospitalized?
It is done on an outpatient basis, no hospitalization is needed.

What kind of bandages will I need, when will they be removed?
You will have to wear an elastic hairband day and night during the first three days, and only at night during two more weeks.

Will I feel a lot of pain?
The pain will be low. The surgeon will indicate you to take analgesics every 6 or 8 hours; this will make you feel quite relieved.

When will the stitches be removed?
7 days after the surgery.

What about swelling and bruises?
Almost none. In order to prevent their development, it is advisable to sleep with the head elevated during the first days and to apply cold compresses.

What will the scars look like?
The skin behind the ears tends to heal slowly, so you will have to keep it clean and to apply antiseptic products to prevent infections. The scar will be completely hidden from view.

Recovery period

You may return to your usual activities a day after the surgery, according to the complexity of your case. During the first month, the area may lack sensitivity or it may feel numb. Apart from that, the recovery is immediate. You will only need to avoid any activities in which your ears could be hit or tugged.
During the recovery period, some people may feel quite depressed. It’s quite normal to feel this way after any kind of surgery, no matter how simple it may be. You may even come to think that you made a big mistake. But don’t worry. Most of the people who are happy today and who are satisfied with the results obtained, have also felt somewhat depressed.

What are the risks and complications involved?

Every surgery, no matter how simple it may be, has certain risks, and we should not rule them out. However, it is very unlikely for an otoplasty to present any complications when performed by a qualified surgeon.

  • Infections may develop but, if you take the right antibiotics, they will be less likely to develop.
  • Asymmetry. Even though the surgeon marks the areas he will operate on very carefully, there may be asymmetries.
  • Adverse reactions to anesthesia.
Finally, the outcome...

Your eyes will be more stylized. The change will be very subtle and no one will be able to pin it down unless you talk about it. You may be told that your eyes seem to have a special look and they will wonder if you have changed your make up. You will be able to appreciate the results after 2 or 6 weeks, and they are usually permanent. The scars will become almost invisible after a few months.

Otoplasty (ear pinning) before and after
Otoplasty (ear pinning) before and after

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