Otoplasty Pinnaplasty | Pin Back Your Ears For This

If your ears are very 'sticky out' and you want to change them you can have an operation which is known as otoplasty or pinnaplasty. Some families just have prominent ears, also called protruding ears, and it can be easy to predict that children of such families might well do so too. In the first three months of a child's life it is possible to easily correct it with splintage or neonatal ear mouldings and avoid surgery altogether. The later you start the longer the period of splint wearing. A trade marked company called Ear Buddies has useful information on this.



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Most otoplasty surgery is performed on children after the age of six and by then their ears are nearly fully grown and the cartilage is still easy to reshape. The operation is usually performed under general anesthetic and so the patient is asleep during the one or two hours that is required for the surgery. The surgeon exposes the ear cartilage by cutting behind the ears, cutting the cartilage and stitching the ears in position. The head will usually be bandaged for about a week. Soreness and aching in that area is to be expected but the operation is not overly painful. You do need to keep a watch for blood clots and infections in that area till the ears have fully healed. Most people can resume their normal daily activities after a week but contact sports must be avoided for six or seven weeks.

There is also an otoplasty method known as Dr. Merck’s stitch method which is a closed, minimally invasive method with no incision and no exposure of cartilage. The wounds are small stitch points which heal in a matter of days. There does not appear to be a Dr Merck's clinic in Ireland. If you find someone in Ireland who uses this method it would be appreciated if you could let us know about them.

In general this type of surgery is carried out by ENT surgeons who specialise in otoplasty. You can read about finding these surgeons at Rhinoplasty / Otolaryngology Specialist Surgeons.

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