Most otoplasty patients are between 4 and 14 years old; however, several adults also choose to have the procedure to correct large or deformed ears, protruding ears, lop ear, and cupped or shell ear.
Malformed ears include anything from shelled ears, cupped ears or ears that are otherwise not visible due to congenital disabilities. The ears are examined for malformed and excessive cartilage, soft tissue deformity and mal-positioned cartilage.
When Is the Best Time for Otoplasty?
Children’s ears are typically completely developed by the time they reach 4. The procedure is commonly conducted to improve the appearance of the ears so that the child isn’t exposed to ridicule from childhood bullying. Adults have firmer cartilage than children and do not provide the same moulding capacity. There are two reasons why having otoplasty at a younger age is desirable:
- The cartilage is very pliable, therefore allowing for greater ease of shaping.
- The child will experience psychological benefits early on from the improvement.
While at your consultation, your ear surgeon will thoroughly evaluate the structure of your ears and go over the options available for correcting your problems. In a successful bat ear correction surgicentre of Sydney, the ears will be adjusted and placed in proportion to the shape and size of the head and face.
The otoplasty procedure is administered in an outpatient medical surgery centre, physician’s office, or hospital. Surgeons often administer otoplasty under general anaesthesia for younger patients and a local anaesthetic combined with a mild sedative for adults and older children. For some general anaesthesia cases, an overnight hospital stay may be required. Otherwise, patients typically return home within a couple of hours of the procedure.
Techniques vary among surgeons and patients. Factors that may impact the choice of the technique include the general anatomy of the ears, the extent of the ear cartilage or the excess skin in the surrounding area.
Following the Otoplasty Procedure
Following your otoplasty, your head will be wrapped in a thick bandage. The bandage aids in maintaining the new position of the ears and helps with the healing process. You will need to visit your surgeon within the first few days following your otoplasty to have your bandages changed. Your surgeon will provide you with a complete and thorough postoperative instruction list, which you need to follow carefully in order to reduce the risk of complications.
For more complex procedures a longer recovery time may be needed. The ears should remain unbent for at least one month following surgery. While recovering from otoplasty patients may experience temporary numbness and discomfort which is managed with oral medications.