Otoplasty refers to the surgical procedure performed to reshape the ear. There are different types of otoplasty surgery performed to correct various types of deformity of the ear. The commonest type of otoplasty done is ear pinning surgery, which is done to correct protruding ears. Protruding ear, sometimes also known as prominent ear, occurs when the ear stick out more than 2cm from the head. The condition is caused by malformation of cartilage during early development of the ear. Correction by otoplasty (ear pinning) involves changing the shape of the ear cartilage so that the ear is brought closer to the side of the head. The surgery does not affect hearing and the surgery is done for cosmetic purposes only.


Otoplasty is also performed to correct others ear deformities, which include Stahl’s ear, cryptotia, constricted ear, cleft earlobe, and various other defects due to trauma.





      1. Inform the doctor of any pre-existing medical conditions and drug allergy. All medical conditions must be treated and stabilized before surgery.
      2. Stop smoking at least one week before surgery. Smoking is harmful to wound healing and increases the risks of other post-operation complications.
      3. Stop the following medications and supplements from one week before surgery until one week after surgery.
        1. All supplements containing vitamin E, ginseng, ginkgo, garlic, fish oil, and other ingredients that increase bleeding during the procedure. Other supplements, traditional medicine, and herbs, in which ingredients are unknown, have to stop as well.
        2. Medicine that increases bleeding during the procedure such as aspirin, NSAIDs, and warfarin. However, you may need to consult your physician who prescribed the medication before you stop them.
      4. On the day of surgery, wear simple and comfortable clothing. Do not wear any makeup. Do not wear any jewelry and metal objects on the face and body.
      5. Don’t wear glasses on the day of surgery as there will be ear bandage after surgery.





Duration: 2-3 hours

Anaesthesia: Local anaesthesia for adults. General anaesthesia for children.

Hospitalization: Not required.

Recovery*: Back to work in 5-7 days, light exercise after 2-3 weeks, heavy exercise after 4 weeks. * The actual speed of recovery may vary from person to person.

Surgery Technique*: The incision is made on the back of the ear. The surgeon reshape the ear cartilage to bring the ear closer to the head or to create the desired shape of the ear. The exact technique for the reshaping may differ depending on the specific deformity of the ear.



Post-operative Care**

      1. What to expect:
        1. Swelling usually peaks on the second to third day after surgery and will gradually subside after that. Post-operative pain is usually minimal.
        2. The patient is required to wear an ear bandage for one week to protect the ear.
      2. General care
        1. Elevate the head during sleep to reduce swelling.
        2. Avoid smoking for at least one month. Smoking increases the risk of wound complications.
        3. Adequate rest and sleep are helpful for a speedy recovery.
        4. Sleep on the back. Avoid sleeping on one side to prevent pressure on the ear.
        5. Be relaxed and calm. Contact the clinic if there are any queries.
        6. Don’t wear framed glasses for at least 2-3 weeks to avoid pressure in the ears.
      3. Medicine: Finish the oral antibiotics as prescribed. Take the painkiller as prescribed when necessary.
      4. Wound care: After the bandage is removed after one week, clean the wound with a clean cotton tip soaked with sterile water/saline. Apply antibiotic ointment.
      5. Physical activity: Avoid heavy physical activity and exercise for at least one month.
      6. Follow-up: Come back three days after surgery for wound inspection. Come back again after one week after surgery for suture removal and review.
      7. Emergency: If there is heavy bleeding, a rapid increase in swelling or severe pain, immediately contact the clinic/doctor for advice.


** The instructions in this list are only for general guidance. If you have any specific queries or concerns during the post-operative recovery, please contact the clinic for further advice.


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