What is otoplasty and why should I consider it?
Otoplasty is generally the surgical correction of deformities, defects, or other abnormalities of the external ear. Dr. Ip and his constituents in Newport Beach have a collectively vast expertise on otoplasty. They correct congenital malformations, cosmetic issues, and possible injury to the outer ear due to trauma by changing the position, size, or shape of the outer ears. Many patients choose to have otoplasty because they think that their ears are too prominent, sticking out the sides of their heads, misshapen due to injury, or deformed because of a birth defect. For congenital issues, otoplasty is best administered after the age of five, or after the ears have reached full size.
What should I expect from otoplasty?
Before any type of correction is made, the doctor will do a thorough review of the patient’s medical history and conduct a physical examination to help in determining the best approach prior to the surgery. The patient must be able to convey his expectations and be very clear about the results he wishes to achieve. Patients are typically out under local anesthesia for this procedure, although local anesthesia with sedation may also be an option. The technique used in the otoplasty procedure will depend upon the specific requirement of the patient, which will determine where the incisions and the resulting scars will be located. These can be made at the back or in the inner creases of the ears. The underlying cartridges will be folded into the proper position and secured using internal stitches. Any excess cartilage and skin will be removed, and the incision will be closed using additional stitches. A standard otoplasty will take about two hours to complete.
What about recovery?
The ears will be covered in bandages right after surgery to protect them and to support the new correction. Swelling, bruising, itching, and irritation will be a normal part of the recovery process. The doctors will be able to prescribe pain medication to manage discomfort. Unnecessary pressure on the ears is to be avoided after the surgery. This can be achieved by advising the patient to avoid sleeping on his side and even wearing button-down or loose-fitting shirts instead of ones that you have to pull over your head. The bandages should come off after a few days, but a loose headband will be put in its place to cover the ears for about six weeks for protection.
To view more of Dr. Ip’s ear surgery cases, click here to view our photo gallery.
What results will I get from otoplasty?
A few days after the bandages have been removed and most of the swelling has gone down, the patient will be able to see an immediate change in the appearance of the ears. The final results will be more obvious once swelling and bruising have disappeared but, overall, the ears will have been adjusted to the patient’s desired position, size, and shape. These changes are permanent, so if you are in any way dissatisfied with the results discuss possible revision surgery options with your surgeon.