Otoplasty St. Louis
Streamline Your Look
Otoplasty refers to correction of prominent ears. This is often something that develops at a very young age due to differences in the amount and folding of the ear cartilages. Many patients with prominent ears have unfortunately been teased about their appearance and may wear a particular hairstyle to try and camouflage their concerns.
During your consultation your surgeon will assess the ears for symmetry, areas of excess tissue and inadequate cartilage folding. Measurements and photographs will be taken for your record. Approaches for achieving your desired facial look will be discussed.
- Length: 2 hours
- Anesthesia: Sedation or general
- Stay: Outpatient, same day surgery
- Recovery: 3-7 days
- Side Effects: Asymmetry, temporary numbness, recurrence
- Reduce excess cartilage in the bowl of the ear
- Produce more natural ear folds
- Narrow the projection of the ear from the head
PREPARING FOR EAR CORRECTION
Smoking and all forms of nicotine should be stopped at least 2 weeks prior to surgery. This includes e-cigarettes, patches, and gum.
Any medications and supplements which cause an increased risk of bleeding should also be stopped 2 weeks prior to any major surgery. Please see our list of medications and supplements to avoid. As always, make sure to check with your doctor before stopping any medications.
Our surgeons use a variety of techniques to discretely remove excess ear cartilage, and then securely fold the tissues to a more natural contour and projection. Great care is taken to provide lasting, symmetrical, and pleasing results. Incisions may be placed in the bowl of the ear, hidden behind the ear, or both. After the shaping is complete, a special Vaseline gauze dressing and headwrap will be placed to prevent swelling or bleeding. This is removed in the office in 3-4 days after which time patients can wash their hair and shower regularly. Our surgeons recommend patients then wear a wide headband (ski band) to protect the ear at all times for the first 2 weeks, then at night while sleeping for 6 weeks.
RECOVERY FROM PROMINENT EAR CORRECTION SURGERY
Patients can recover at home after surgery. Otoplasty is not overly painful, but the area will be a little sore after the initial numbing medications wear off. Results will be immediately evident. A postoperative headwrap will be removed in the office 3-4 days after surgery, at which time patients can transition to a wide elastic headband to protect the ear. Most sutures are dissolvable but sometimes may need removal. Showering and washing the area can occur after being cleared by your surgeon at the first postoperative visit. Patients will usually take antibiotics for 5 days after the surgery and will have pain medications prescribed as needed. Other than headband requirements, patients can resume light activities after 1 week, and more strenuous activities after 2 weeks. Avoid contact sports or situations where the ear may get traumatized or tugged on for at least 8 weeks.