Otoplasty is a cosmetic procedure usually performed on children

Ear surgery or otoplasty (also called “ear pinning”) is a type of cosmetic plastic surgery procedure aimed at setting prominent ears closer to the head, or reducing the size of larger ears. However, there are other ear problems that can be helped with this surgery. Surgeons can even build new ears for those who were born without them or who lost them through injury.

The operation is usually done on children between the ages of 5 and 6; however, ear surgery for adults does occur.

About the ear pinning procedure

Although each procedure varies, generally, ear pinning surgeries alter the cartilage just behind the ear. In some cases, cartilage and skin might be removed. In other cases, stitches are used to hold the cartilage permanently in place.

The procedure may be done at a surgeon's office-based surgical facility, an outpatient surgery center, or as an inpatient or outpatient procedure at the hospital. Children receive general anesthesia (they’re asleep throughout the surgery) while adults may receive local anesthesia, combined with a sedative, which allows you to remain awake but relaxed.

Otoplasty usually takes several hours. There may be some complications such as blood clots on the ears or infection in the cartilage, which can cause scar tissue to form. Generally, however, the side effects of ear surgery are less serious, including throbbing, and aching or mild discomfort in the ears.

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