Ear Surgery Overview
Ear surgery, also known as otoplasty, ear pinning, and earlobe repair, can help children and adults who have concerns about the physical appearance of their ears. Often adults want to achieve a more natural profile or repair an earlobe that has been torn or stretched. Many parents also consider ear surgery for their child to prevent teasing about the size and shape of their ears. For the most part, ear surgery is done on children after age five since ears are almost fully grown by age four, and the earlier the surgery, the less teasing and ridicule the child will have to endure. Ear surgery on adults is also possible and there are generally no additional risks associated with ear surgery on an older patient. Anyone considering ear surgery for themselves or their child, should make a consultation at The Lubbock Plastic Surgery Institute. At the Lubbock or Midland office, Dr. Schmid or Dr. Mooty can examine the patient’s ears and determine if they are a suitable candidate for ear surgery.
"I cannot say how pleased I am with Dr. Schmid, his staff, and my results! The entire process from beginning to end was great!"- D. / Healthgrades / Nov 16, 2018
"Dr. Schmid and his staff at LPSI were amazing - My experience with Dr. Schmid and the rest of his staff at LPSI was amazing! They put me completely at ease, took great care of me every step of the way, and I am incredibly happy with the results of my mommy makeover!"- F. / RealSelf / May 08, 2020
"Dr. Schmid and his staff are wonderful! He was receptive to all concerns and questions during pre-op appointments and made the whole surgery process comfortable and easy to understand. He and his staff are always kind and welcoming."- S. / Healthgrades / Apr 20, 2020
"From my consultation, to my surgery and post op care Dr. Schmid and his staff have been amazing! Very detailed in his work and gave me exactly what I was asking for in my breast augmentation. His nurse answered every question I had and made me feel comfortable with my decisions. Would highly recommend him to anyone."- D.W. / Healthgrades / Apr 07, 2020
"My experience with Dr. Mooty has been tremendously positive. He listened carefully to my concerns and answered all my questions, never making me feel rushed. His bedside manner is kind, caring, and reassuring. Through two surgeries, my recovery was quicker than expected, with minimal pain and very small incisions. His nursing and office staff are excellent and answered all my questions before, during, and after treatment. I highly recommend Dr. Mooty for his skill, compassion, and professionalism."- N. / Healthgrades / Mar 03, 2020
Ear Surgery Surgical Technique
The technique used during ear surgery will depend on the abnormality. First, there may be an insufficient amount of ear cartilage to support the fold of the ear, or too much cartilage where the ear canal starts. Both issues will cause the ear to protrude outward. In some cases, the ears may appear too large. Regardless of the condition, the cartilage will usually be addressed and either removed or reshaped. Then, the cartilage will be secured with sutures into a new position closer to the head. The incision is generally placed within the natural folds of the ear so scarring is not an issue.
Ear Surgery During/After Surgery
All otoplasties are performed under general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure in an accredited surgical facility. The entire surgery typically takes about 2 hours to complete. After surgery, patients will be sent home with their heads wrapped in a compression bandage, which will later be replaced with lighter bandaging. Initially, patients will feel discomfort if they attempt to move their ears. This will subside in a few days. Younger patients will need to be monitored so they do not touch or play with their ears during the healing process.
Plan Your Procedure
- Recovery Time
- 1 - 3 Weeks
- Average Procedure Time
- 2 - 3 Hours
- Procedure Recovery Location
Ear Surgery FAQs
The results following an otoplasty procedure are long lasting. However, just like any other cosmetic procedure, aging and gravity may cause increased laxity. This could eventually affect the position of the ears. For the most part, the improvements made with this surgery are still significant.
Children between the ages of 4-6 are considered within the ideal range for this surgery. From an anatomical standpoint, the cartilage is still soft and will be easier to remold and manipulate. From a psychological standpoint, having this surgery before starting elementary school can help avoid teasing and ridicule from classmates.
Both Ear or Just One?
In the majority of cases, both ears are affected. Therefore, surgery is performed on both ears. However, there may sometimes be an abnormality in just one ear. If this is the case, surgery will be performed on the affected ear, which will be made to match the opposing ear.