In cases of over-developed or protruding ears, otoplasty may be an option. Otoplasty is more commonly known as “pinning back” the ears. It is available for children as young as the age of six, once their ears have stopped developing. We recommend treating protruding ears before they become a serious issue and cause of psychological stress and trauma. The doctors at Loudoun Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery are trained in several surgical procedures that can eliminate most of the problems related to over-developed ears.

Before Surgery

To better understand your overall health and conditions, we will thoroughly evaluate your medical history before surgery. For the most effective surgical approach, a complete examination of your ears is also made. All issues regarding the surgery, such as final shape of the ear and types of anesthesia used will be discussed.

One of our doctors will provide you with pre-operative instructions that may include stopping the use of specific drugs that contain aspirin several weeks before surgery. This is done to minimize excess bleeding. In addition, antibiotics may be prescribed to prevent infection. The areas in question are marked and digital photographs are taken so that we can document the amount of improvement following surgery.

The Procedure

Otoplasty can be performed under general anesthesia or IV sedation and one of our doctors will discuss these options with you. We may either fold the cartilage located on the back of the ear or remove excess cartilage during the procedure. Sutures are placed and bandages applied to encourage faster healing. The procedure typically takes only a few hours to complete.

Post-Operative Information

After the operation, it is not uncommon to experience bruising around the area. This will fade in two to three weeks.  Discomfort associated with otoplasty is minimal and can be easily treated with oral medication. The bandages should only be needed for a few days and can then be replaced with a lighter dressing.  Showering and shampooing may begin a few days after the procedure. Most otoplasty patients can resume normal activities two to three days after the surgery. Consult with one of our doctors before attempting any athletic activities that may affect the healing process.