Otoplasty is a cosmetic procedure used to alter the position, shape, size, and/or projection of prominent ears. You might consider otoplasty if you have ears that protrude excessively from your head, ears that seem too large, or ears that have an abnormal shape. Since otoplasty is considered cosmetic in nature, it typically is not covered by insurance.
This procedure can be performed in patients of all ages - from children at least 5-6 years old (when the ears have reached approximately 90% of adult-sized ears) to adults of any age. If you are considering this procedure, the first step is consultation with a surgeon, such as a facial
Typically, an otoplasty is performed through placement of permanent sutures and/or removal of excess ear cartilage (cartilage is the underlying framework of the ear). Otoplasty can be performed in a clinic setting with local anesthesia or in an operating room setting with sedation or general anesthesia. This is based on several factors including surgeon preference, patient age, overall patient health. It is important to discuss the safest option with your surgeon during your consultation. If the procedure happens in the operating room, patients are usually able to go home the same day.
After the procedure, you can expect to wear a dressing over your ears for approximately 1 week. This will provide light pressure to the sites of surgery to help with healing. Once the dressing is removed, it is important to apply ointment to your incisions multiple times per day to help with ongoing healing. Your surgeon will provide specific post-procedure instructions as well.
To get more information about otoplasty, or if you would like to schedule a consultation with one of our surgeons (Dr. Peter Hilger, Dr. Sofia Lyford-Pike, Dr. Jenna Van Beck), please call the Hilger Face Center in Edina, Minnesota at 952-844-0404.