Otoplasty

Ear in detailIt has been said that the shape of ears is as individual as a fingerprint, but that variability sometimes produces shapes that can lead to sensitivity. Treatment at birth, while the ear cartilage is very soft can correct shape errors, but often is delayed until the child is about 5 years old.

At that time surgical methods are needed to re-bend the cartilage and correct the developmental change.

Each ear is different, and inspection of the different areas will lead to a customised corrective surgical procedure. The aim is to produce an ear with a natural appearance.

The method I recommend will leave a scar in the fold behind the ear. To correct the ear position, an ellipse of skin is usually removed from that fold: part of the soft tissue is retained attached to the skin.

That soft tissue is detached from the cartilage of the ear, and the small muscle behind the ear: that is active in some people: is located and divided from its attachment.

A pocket is created at the level of the deep tissues behind the ear, to allow the concha to nestle flatter to the side of the head. Stitches secure the concha curve into that position.

The fold of the antehelix is inspected: and deepened using stitches to allow the cartilage to curve in a natural manner, folding the outer ear (helix) backwards.

The muscle is then reattached onto the cartilage in a higher position to support the new shape, and the soft tissue is also reattached to a higher position to support the new shape.

The skin is closed.

This surgery needs to be protected through the early healing phase: a large soft bandage is applied and changed, depending on the age and cooperation of the patient, to a soft head band that you can choose before the surgery: and then needs to be worn all day and night for the first week. It should be worn when sleeping for the next 6 weeks, and for any sport to protect against injury in those early stages.