What is Otoplasty?

Otoplasty, sometimes referred to as ear pinning or ear reshaping, is a cosmetic ear surgery that alters the size, shape, and position of the outer ear (the pinna). Although an otoplasty is most commonly employed to address prominent or protruding ears (prominotia), the procedure can also correct deformities and other issues requiring reconstructive ear surgery. An otoplasty is limited to the outer ear and does not affect the internal structure of the ear.

New York board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Robert J. Morin, a specialist in reconstructive and cosmetic surgery with offices in New York and New Jersey, performs otoplasties on both children and adult patients. Dr. Morin’s medical background includes extensive training in pediatric plastic surgery and craniofacial surgery, making him uniquely qualified to work with younger patients.

before - iconFemale patient before revision rhinoplasty surgery - photo
after - iconFemale patient after revision rhinoplasty surgery - photo

Ideal Candidates for Otoplasty

An otoplasty procedure is most often performed on children, particularly those who are subjected to teasing or ridicule due their irregularly large ears. However adult patients may choose to have an otoplasty for aesthetic reasons or to repair an ear after an injury.

Adults who are ideal candidates are:

  • Healthy with no major medical conditions
  • Non-smokers
  • Clear about their aesthetic goals and what an otoplasty can address

Children who are ideal candidates are:

  • Typically between the ages of 7 and 9, when the ear is almost fully grown
  • Healthy and do not suffer from chronic ear infections
  • Have the consent of their parents and the desire themselves to undergo otoplasty

Types of Ear Deformities

Ear deformities can be congenital or may arise due to a trauma or injury. Some ear deformities that an otoplasty can correct include:

before - iconFemale patient before revision rhinoplasty surgery - photo
after - iconFemale patient after revision rhinoplasty surgery - photo
  • Cargot’s ear: a congenital condition that is characterized by an ear without an earlobe
  • Cleft earlobe: a notch in the earlobe
  • Cauliflower ear: a misshapen ear due to recurring trauma (usually affects boxers and wrestlers)
  • Lop ear: a protruding ear
  • Macrotia: oversized ears in relation to the head
  • Microtia: an underdeveloped or absent pinna
  • Stahl’s ear deformity: a pointed ear resulting from abnormal folding of the pinna

Otoplasty Surgery in New York City

When you visit our New York City office for an otoplasty consultation with Dr. Morin, he will evaluate the ears to determine the best surgical technique to correct the ears. Depending on the particular problem, the surgery may involve sculpting or removing the ear cartilage to reshape the ears. Conversely, tissue grafting may be required. Dr. Morin often recommends treating both ears, in order to create the most symmetric outcome.

before - iconFemale patient before revision rhinoplasty surgery - photo
after - iconFemale patient after revision rhinoplasty surgery - photo

During the procedure, Dr. Morin will make strategic incisions behind the ear, following the ear’s natural folds and creases. Once he has reshaped the ear, he will stabilize the ear with sutures so that it can heal in its new position. For the first few days of recovery, patients must wear a protective dressing and can expect minimal discomfort–especially when sleeping on the side. Common symptoms include throbbing and aching, which lasts a few days. Typically, patients require approximately one week of recovery before they can resume most of their normal daily activities.

Otoplasty Consultation with Dr. Morin

Asymmetrical, overly prominent or deformed ears can affect self-esteem. If you live or work in the NY or NJ area and would like to know more about cosmetic ear surgery, either for yourself or a child, contact Dr. Morin at his NYC or Hackensack office to schedule a consultation. He can determine if an otoplasty procedure is the appropriate option for you or your child.

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