Ear Pinning (Otoplasty) Surgery Abroad
Otoplasty is usually performed on children between the ages of 4 and 14 to bring ears that are large or prominent farther back towards the scalp. The human ear is almost fully grown by the age of 4 years, making it is safe to perform surgery at this time. Ear pinning is also available to adults at no additional risk.
Otoplasty can be performed at a hospital, surgery clinic or a doctor’s office. It is generally an outpatient procedure, but at times, a child may be admitted overnight. Anesthesia varies depending on the age of the patient. For a young child, general anesthesia may ease the process, but for adults it’s possible to use local anesthesia instead.
The average ear pinning procedure takes 2 to 3 hours. In the most common technique, an incision on the back of the ear is made, exposing the cartilage beneath. The cartilage is then bent back towards the scalp. If the ear is very prominent, permanent stitches may be used to maintain the new shape of the ear. There may be slight scarring where the skin is joined, but this usually fades with time.
After an otoplasty procedure, patients are usually mobile after a couple of hours. Adult patients can leave the hospital once they are awake, but for children the anesthesia may have a longer effect so it may be necessary to stay overnight. Immediately following the surgery, the head of the patient is wrapped in a sterile bandage.
For the first few days, there may be some pain and throbbing, but medication is available to alleviate these symptoms. After 2 or 3 days, the bandage will be replaced with a lighter one, and after a week the stitches will either dissolve or be removed.