Ear surgery, known as otoplasty, is usually performed in our practice to bring prominent ears closer to the head or to reduce the size of the ears or earlobes. In most cases, surgery is performed in children between four and fourteen years of age. Since the ears are almost fully developed by the age of four, there is no reason to wait until a child is older to perform the procedure. Otoplasty in adults is also possible and, in general, there are no additional risks. Our doctors will do their best to provide you with a safe and comfortable procedure with the desired result.
What are the indications for otoplasty?
The ideal candidate for ear surgery is a healthy child aged between four and fourteen, or an adult with a good overall health status with one or more of the following features: prominent and distanced from the head ears, too large and disproportionate ears or exaggeratedly large auricular lobes.
During the first consultation, before planning your surgery, Dr. Sinescu will carefully assess the size and shape of your or your child’s ears and determine the best way to perform the procedure. It is generally considered that parents should not insist on surgery as long as the child does not feel prepared. Children who want surgery are generally more cooperative during the healing process and more satisfied with the results. The patient will be asked how he or she would like to look after the operation. We will discuss what you can expect from this surgery and we’ll review all the existing options. You will be given a detailed explanation of the procedure, steps to be followed before and after surgery, potential risks and complications, costs and payment methods. We will answer all your questions. We’ll ask for medical history, information on cigarette and alcohol consumption and a list of all the medicines you use, including the over the counter ones.
Otoplasty will be performed in one of the clinics where our surgeons work. In some cases, with smaller children, your doctor may recommend a night of hospitalization to facilitate the recovery process. Smaller children are usually given general anesthesia so that they can sleep throughout the procedure. Older children / adolescents and adults generally receive local anesthesia and sedation. With local anesthesia, you are awake for the procedure, but relaxed and comfortable.
When both ears are corrected, surgery usually lasts between one and three hours. Your doctor makes a small incision behind the ear to expose the cartilage. The cartilage is then molded and brought closer to the head and usually non-resorbable sutures are used to maintain the new shape. In some cases, the surgeon will remove a piece of cartilage to ensure a natural look. In the end, a massive dressing is applied, which will have to be worn for a few days, to stabilize the results during the healing period. It will then be replaced with a soft headband for several weeks.
Recovery after otoplasty
Extraction of sutures- one week postoperatively
Return to school / work – one week postoperatively
Activities that may affect the ears – 6 weeks postoperatively
Intense physical activity – 4 weeks postoperatively
Fading of the scars – a few months to a year
What are the possible side effects or risks?
Every surgery has a certain degree of risk; however, complications after otoplasty are rare and usually minor. During the first consultation, the individual risks will be evaluated and discussed. You can help reduce risks by carefully following the pre- and post-operative instructions provided. Our staff will be at your side at every step of the way to ensure a safe and aesthetic result.
The most likely side effects include the following:
How long do the results last?
Otoplasty can reduce the size and protrusion of one or both ears. The results of surgery are permanent.
Frequently asked questions
Does my health insurance cover the costs of the intervention?
Insurance can cover the cost of an otoplasty if the deformation of the ear is congenital, posttraumatic or following a chronic condition. In most cases, however, ear correction is considered cosmetic surgery and is therefore not covered by insurance. You are responsible for the full payment of the procedure. During the initial consultation, the costs and payment information will be discussed with you in detail.