What is Otoplasty?
Otoplasty (ear pinning surgery) can have a significant, positive impact on a child’s or adult’s self-esteem. Children are often teased about their protruding ears, and adults can garner a negative self-image resulting from their prominent ears. Otoplasty is a cosmetic ear re-shaping procedure which can be performed on patients of any age after four.
This procedure corrects these problems and can change one’s life for the better. During otoplasty, the surgeon can resculpt the protruding ear cartilage to create a natural-looking ear.
After the procedure is complete, what can the otoplasty patient, whether a child or adult, expect in terms of recovery?
Once the procedure is finished, patients wear a light compression ear bandage, which resembles a turban. This is wrapped around the head to protect the newly shaped ears. One day after the surgery, the surgeon removes the bandage so he or she can view the incisions and healing process. This bandage is then reapplied for another two days. This will depend upon the surgeon’s preference and is based upon what was done during the surgery to correct the ear shape.
After the dressing is removed, you will need to wear a protective dressing over the ears. This protective dressing is usually in the form of a head band. Men tend to wear a sports head band, and women often wear hair bands that can be stylish as well.
The goal of wearing the head band during the otoplasty recovery phase is to maintain the ear’s new position during the healing phase. In addition, the dressing will help protect your ear and prevent any trauma that can damage the results. Wearing this head band is essential to the recovery phase and will help maintain a permanent result from your otoplasty surgery.
The head band is worn around the clock for the first 2 weeks after the bandages are removed. Over the next 6 weeks, the protective head band must be worn at night and during periods of physical activity. The purpose of this is to prevent any inadvertent trauma to the ear which can compromise healing. This protects the shape of the ears and allows them to heal in the most effective manner.
Most patients go home comfortably after the otoplasty procedure. Some patients experience a dull throbbing of the ears for a few days after surgery, which can be relieved with a prescription mild pain medication.
The majority of patients return to a normal routine within only one week. During that week, they should avoid vigorous physical activity. Children who undergo otoplasty are restricted in gym class and sports for two weeks following the procedure. After these two weeks, they must wear a protective head band at night and when participating in the activities for the next six weeks.
Follow the post-op instructions
It’s important for all otoplasty patients to avoid aggressive manipulation or trauma to the ear for at least six weeks after surgery. Also, they should avoid activities that place the ear in jeopardy.
It will take time for all of the ear sensation to return. It is also important to avoid extreme weather conditions and avoid holding hot-air blow dryers too close to the ear. As with all plastic surgery procedures, those considering undergoing otoplasty should be sure to work with a highly experienced and specialised cosmetic ear surgeon like at top ear pinning clinic in Sydney, Dr Zurek to ensure optimal results. Always consult with your surgeon regarding the post-operative instruction as this will vary from physician to physician.