Big ears are not funny, at least not to many people born with them. In fact, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported that nearly 40,000 teens in 2001 had Otoplasty surgery to reduce the prominence of their ears.
There are exceptions, but children and teens with prominent ears are often teased and ridiculed by their peers. Boys grow tired of having to grow long hair to cover their ears, while girls affected by the problem are reluctant to even tuck their hair behind their ears or wear a ponytail.
Otoplasty – a simple surgical procedure – can give these children more balance to their facial features.
Otoplasty, or ear pinning, is a surgical procedure for individuals whose ears are abnormally large or overly prominent.
The procedure takes between one and two hours, depending on the specific condition being addressed. It can be done under local anesthesia in the office setting. For young children or according to patient wishes, surgical anesthesia can be used. Hospitalization is not required, recovery is quick, and usually only mild painkillers are necessary.
Ear pinning can be performed at any age but is best done when patients are at least six or seven years old, so they can be involved and invested in the decision and surgical process. These children are more aware of their bodies and become excited about the change to their ears.
Approximately 33 percent of all Otoplasty procedures are performed on boys and girls in their teens.
As will all elective surgeries, it’s very important for the patient to be part of the Otoplasty decision-making process.
Studies haven’t isolated any race or gender for the conditions of macrotia – ears that are too big – or microtia – ears that are too small or nonexistent, but genetic inheritance is often a factor
Dr. Scott K. Thompson, Double Board Certified Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon
Dr. Scott Thompson is dual board certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. He is known for his natural-looking results and meticulous skill as well as his genuine concern for patient well-being and satisfaction. He practices in three locations and five surgical centers along the Wasatch front in Utah.
Thompson Facial Plastics offers a wide variety of surgical and non-surgical procedures to correct and prevent signs of aging and enhance overall beauty. Botox, lip augmentation, and dermal wrinkle fillers are popular non-surgical procedures as well as laser resurfacing, chemical peels, and laser hair removal. Surgical procedures offered include blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), facelift, in-office facelift (MACS-lift), rhinoplasty (nosejob), septorhinoplasty, otoplasty (ear-pinning surgery), browlift, midfacelift, and hair restoration. Thompson Facial Plastics may be reached at (801)776-2220 or by visiting utahfacialplastics.com.
This article appeared in the January 2013 edition of the Davis Wellness magazine.