If you have protruding, drooping, or otherwise unattractive ears, you may be used to concealing them behind your hair or under a hat. But there is no reason why you should have to hide forever, be self-conscious every time you are caught with your hair undone, or worry in every situation where your ears may show themselves. Instead, surgical correction can help you have ears that will not make you self-conscious, ears that let you feel normal in social situations. Ear surgery can also be performed on children once their ears reach full size (typically age 6).
If you would like to learn more about ear surgery for you or your child, please schedule a consultation with Dr. George Lefkovits today.
Goals of Ear Surgery
Ear surgery is used to correct any aspect of an ear's appearance that may make a person self-conscious. This can include congenital deformities or damage to the ear as a result of accidents. Aspects of the ear's appearance that can be addressed include:
- Lop ears
- Protruding ears
- Torn earlobes
- Completely or partially missing ears
- Lack of an opening in the ear
As a general rule, these surgeries do not impact your hearing. The goal is to correct the appearance of the ear to increase self-confidence and emotional well-being.
Ear surgery is the only cosmetic plastic surgery that is commonly performed on children. It can safely be performed on children because the ears are the first part of the body to reach full size, normally by age 6. Children with protruding or deformed ears are often subject to intense teasing that can make school very difficult and lead to long-term damage to her self-esteem.
The Ear Surgery Procedure
Ear surgery is most commonly performed in our state-of-the-art surgicenter under local anesthesia, but for children who cannot sit still for the procedure, sedation may be recommended. Incisions are made behind the ear and the cartilage of the ear is reshaped. Permanent stitches may be used to hold the ear in place. Replacing a missing ear or portion of an ear will require the use of shaped donor tissue.
Ear Surgery Recovery and Results
Ear surgery does not normally result in significant discomfort during recovery. During recovery, it is best to restrict strenuous activities for about a week. Dressings are worn on the ears for about 4-5 days, and protective garments are worn while sleeping for up to two weeks after surgery. Children should also be restricted from roughhousing for up to three weeks after surgery.
Once healing is complete, the final results should be visible. Results will be permanent.
Ear Surgery Complications
There are few serious complications associated with ear surgery. However, as with any surgery, there are some risks, including:
- Less than desirable cosmetic results
- Loosening of sutures or damage to unhealed ear
Closely following Dr. Lefkovits' postoperative instructions will significantly reduce the risk of these complications. Make sure to closely monitor children after surgery to ensure they also follow instructions.
To learn more about ear surgery for yourself or your child, please call or email New York plastic surgeon Dr. George Lefkovits today to schedule a consultation.