Otoplasty is a surgical procedure that can be performed as early as the age of 6, including adults. The incision (and so the scar) is made behind the ear.

Prominent ears surgery

This surgical procedure is most commonly conducted on children between the age of 9 and 12 who have endured teasing since their early school years, around the age of 6, but have now gathered the courage to undergo the surgery.

It is important to mention that in certain instances, when addressing the absence of folding in the upper portion of the ear, EarFold™ procedure may be used as well.

Occasionally,I also treat adults, and I sometimes see the parents of children on whom I have performed the otoplasty surgery.

Otoplasty is a highly rewarding procedure that brings immense joy to the child and significant relief to the parents. Initially, parents may have concerns about the surgical intervention and question its worth. However, their worries are quickly conforted by the sight of their child’s smile.

Otoplasty is a cosmetic surgery procedure covered by Social Security.

The typical duration of the procedure is approximately one hour, usually performed under general anesthesia.

Clinical examination

Surgery for prominent ears can be performed as early as the age of 6. A clinical examination helps determine the surgical approach. I explain the scarring, the necessary steps, and provide information about potential complications, including the risk of hypertrophic scarring.

External configuration of the ear

1. Helix; 2. Darwin’s Tubercle; 3. Sca
phoid Fossa; 4. Concha; 5. Antihelix; 6. Root of the Antihelix; 7. Antitragohelicine Fissure; 8. Lobule; 9. Anterior and Posterior Branches of the Antihelix; 10. Navicular Fossa; 11. Cymba of the Concha; 12. Root of the Helix; 13. Preauricular Sulcus; 14. Tragus; 15. Antitragus; 16. Intertragal Notch; 17. External Auditory Meatus.

How is the operation performed?

I was filmed performing the surgical technique for otoplasty and explaining the surgical steps for an episode of “Le Magazine de la Santé” broadcasted on France 5. I often refer patients to this footage during consultations.

The procedure usually lasts about one hour under general anesthesia, which is the most comfortable option for the child. The incision is made behind the ear, and the cartilage is sculpted using a rasp. I use absorbable sutures to avoid leaving any materials in the ears that could cause infection or unsightly scarring. The healing process ensures the desired outcome.

A dressing is then applied around the head to properly hold the ears in place for 3 days. The young patient can usually be discharged the same day or the next morning.

Postoperative care

Pain levels vary among patients and can be managed with painkillers. On the third day, the dressing is replaced with a headband. A compression headband should be worn day and night for approximately 15 days, allowing the sutures to dissolve and the healing process to stabilize the outcome. The ears may be slightly swollen and bruised for 8 to 10 days, with the final result being nearly achieved within 15 days. On average, the swelling will completely subside within 4 weeks.

Photos before and after otoplasty

Boy, 7 years old: Conchal hypertrophy; lack of antihelical fold. Result at 6 months.
Young man: Highly prominent ear. Asymmetry. Correct fold on the right. Result at 5 months.
Young girl, 14 years old: Significant and asymmetrical conchal hypertrophy, right side greater than left. Absence of antihelical fold. Result at 3 months.

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