What is an otoplasty;
An otoplasty is a surgical method of cosmetic surgery that aims to restore any deformity observed in the infrastructure of the ear and specifically in the areas of the helix, the antihelix and the lobe without affecting the sense of hearing. More rarely, otoplasty can be performed in cases of complete reconstruction of the auricle.
The method is usually performed in the following cases:
- Prominent ears (the most common form of reconstruction)
- Ear concha hypertrophy
- Incomplete formation of the antihelix
Otoplasty can improve the shape, position and size of the ears by offering a natural result fully proportionated to the head. It is scientifically proven that ear correction can restore the lost self-esteem and self-confidence of a person who has an aesthetic problem and struggles with jokes in their everyday life.
- Prominent ears
Prominent ears are the most common genetic deformity of the ears that can be inherited by both men and women. This is the increased deviation of the auricle from the head, i.e. when it protrudes more than 20 to 30 degrees in the anterior direction.
- Who is it for?
Although there is no age restriction, otoplasty is recommended to be done from the age of 5-7 years onward, when the development of the auricle is 80% complete. As the problem of prominent ears is visible early, preschool is considered ideal to avoid vicious comments and teasing that can aggravate the psychological state of the child and affect their psyche.
- Is there a problem in the development of the auricle when the otoplasty is done at a young age?
The ear is an organ that, as we grow older, develops gradually. The surgery on the ears does not affect their development, because the Plastic Surgeon does not interfere anatomically in the skeleton of the cartilage but only reshapes the areas of the helix, the antihelix and the lobe to offer a harmonious and permanent result.
- The first visit to the doctor’s office
The purpose of the discussion with the Plastic Surgeon is to examine the motivations and expectations of the person concerned. After analyzing and assessing their expectations as realistic, a detailed examination of the ear will follow, during which the necessary photos will be taken, and they will be informed about the possible complications. Then, if a consensus is reached, the date of the operation and the procedures that the operation requires can be set.
- Is otoplasty painful?
Otoplasty is a safe procedure of Aesthetic Surgery, in which the pain gradually subsides over the days. Its goal is to achieve the best natural result with the anatomical restoration of the auricle and without the removal of cartilage that can later cause a re-deformity.
- What complications may occur?
When a Plastic Surgeon is qualified and experienced, it is very rare for a complication such as asymmetry, mild bleeding or inflammation to occur. In case, of course, something like this happens, it is highly manageable after the following of medical advice.
- What kind of medical tests will be needed before an otoplasty?
Before the otoplasty, a review of the medical history of the person concerned, an electrocardiogram and general blood tests will be needed. All tests are performed for precautionary reasons.
- How long does otoplasty last and what kind of anesthesia is required?
Otoplasty lasts about 1-2 hours depending on the size and type of deformity that exists and is performed with the use of local anesthesia with conscious sedation so that people can return home and to their occupations, of course following along medical instructions they were given. However, in case the operation is performed on a child, the use of general anesthesia is recommended in order not to cause any injury to the child’s psyche through their surgical experience.
- During surgery
Initially, the points that need reconstruction are designed with great care and detail. An elliptical incision is then made in the back of the ear so that it is not visible, and the excess skin is removed. The anatomical shaping of the auricle follows. In the end, transdermal sutures are used that are easily absorbed, and thus the operation is completed.
- After surgery
After the surgery, the patient can return home the same day, if local anesthesia with mild sedation has preceded, otherwise with the use of general anesthesia it is recommended for them to stay in the hospital for one day. In any case, the patient is required to wear an elastic bandage for a certain period and take medication such as antibiotics and analgesics to reduce the swelling and to avoid any possibility of infection. The external sutures on the back of the ears are removed in about 7 days. Recovery will occur in about a month and the aesthetic image will be improved and restored.
- In how many days can one return to their daily activities?
Following a medical recommendation, the patient, whether an adult or a child, will need to rest for 1-2 weeks depending on the type of body and the outcome of the operation. At the end of this period they will be able to return to their daily activities showing the necessary attention. The body will have recovered fully in just 1 month.
Already at the end of 2 weeks, the results are obvious. The swelling has subsided from the ears and the difference with the previous condition, in which they were, is beginning to appear. The ears are well formed and in perfect harmony with the rest of the facial features and the head. The result looks natural and is permanent.