LENGTH: 2-3 hours
ANESTHESIA: Twilight Sedation or General
RECOVERY: Return to work: less than a week, Light exercise: 4 weeks, Regular exercise/contact sports: 6-8 weeks
Plastic surgery to reshape the ears of children or adults can reduce the size of large ears and set prominent ears closer to the head. Ear surgery can also help with “lop ear”, pointed ear, large or stretched ear lobes, torn ear lobes, and ear lobes with wrinkles or creases. The results are apparent immediately and are significant for many people’s confidence and self esteem. People who want to improve the appearance of their ears can have ear surgery with Dr.Tran. Dr.Tran is an Arlington plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. The ears are almost fully grown after age five. Most of the time, this procedure is done on children between ages 5 and 15 because and is often prompted by parents because of ridicule or bullying children may be experiencing in school because of the appearance of their ears. Ears surgery is also be done for many adults who are not happy with the way their ears look and may not have had the opportunity to correct them when they were children.
Your Ear Surgery Consultation
Your visit with Dr. Tran will determine if you are a good candidate for an otoplasty. If you are in good physical health and have reasonable expectations then this may be a good choice for you.
During your first visit, Dr. Tran will ask you about your desired results. This will help him understand your expectations and let you know if they can be realistically accomplished. Dr. Tran will analyze the shape of your and its underlying cartilage. After your consultation, photographs will be taken for your medical record and additional analysis.
Be prepared to discuss any medical conditions you may have, allergies, prior surgeries, and any medications, vitamins or other supplements that you currently take. You will be asked about any conditions that may complicate the procedure such as uncontrolled hypertension or clotting problems. It is important for you to provide complete information. If you are a smoker, you will be asked to stop smoking at least 3 weeks before your surgery. Dr. Tran is concerned about your health and safety and depending on your medical status may ask for additional evaluations before proceeding with surgery.
You will learn about the procedure, its limitations and risks, and Dr. Tran will discuss your needs and concerns. He will explain which surgical techniques are most appropriate for you based on your examination and the cartilage structure of your ears.
Ear Reshaping Techniques
The surgery usually takes about 2-3 hours for both ears and done by the surgeon making a small incision on the ear to expose and reshape the cartilage. The incision are discrete and well camouflaged by the natural folds of the ear. Sometimes a piece of cartilage is removed to set the ear back appropriately and sutures may be used to fold the cartilage and maintain the new shape of the ear.
The Day of Surgery
Surgery may be performed as an outpatient procedure at a certified ambulatory surgery center or at one of several affiliated hospitals. Adults have choice of sedation or being completely asleep under general anesthesia. It recommended for children to have the procedure done under general anesthesia. If you are having surgery, be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home and stay to help you the first few days while at home.
The patient’s head will have a bulky gauze bandage immediately after surgery to protect the ear and promote healing. The ears may ache and throb for several days but is relieved with medication. When discharged, you will be given prescriptions for pain and to reduce swelling. The bandages will be replaced after a few days by a lighter head dressing similar to a headband. Be sure to follow Dr. Tran’s instructions for wearing this band, especially at night. Sutures do not need to be removed and usually dissolve after about a week.
Any physical activity or sports that may result in bending the ear should be avoided for about six weeks. Most adults can go back to work after 3 to 5 days. Children can go back to school after about a week if they are careful about recess and playground activity.
Your follow-up visits will usually start a few days following your surgery for a checkup and Dr. Tran will review activity limitations, incision care and concerns you may have. Following this visit you will return in approximately 2 weeks, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months and one year.
Be assured that your relationship with Dr. Tran does not end after your surgery. If you have any concerns during your recovery, or have more questions at a later time, you can always contact Dr. Tran.
How much does ear surgery cost?
After your initial consultation, you will be quoted a price that will include Dr. Tran’s fee as well as the operating room and any anesthesia fees. Financing options are available.
BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS