Otoplasty (Ear Surgery)

What is an Otoplasty?

Ear surgery typically serves two functions: setting prominent ears back closer to the head, and reducing the size of large ears. Surgery may also be helpful for “lop ear,” “cupped ear” and “shell ear,” large or stretched earlobes, and lobes with large creases and wrinkles.Some specialized Surgeons are also able to construct new ears for patients who are missing them from injury or other causes. Although surgery for adults is available, the operation is most often performed on children aged four to 14.  Ears are almost fully grown by age four, so early surgery prevents a child from being teased in school.

In aging adults, prominent earlobe’s may contribute to the aged appearance. In most cases, these large earlobes we can surgically reduce them to a smaller, more desirable size with a relatively short cosmetic procedure done just under local anesthesia in the office.

What should I expect during an otoplasty procedure?

Otoplasty lasts from two to three hours and we operate in a hospital, office-based facility or an outpatient surgery center. We recommend general anesthesia for very young patients, and local anesthesia or sedative for older children and adults. During surgery, your physician will make a small incision behind the ear, revealing the cartilage.   The cartilage is sculpted, bent into its new position, and stitched into place. In some types of otoplasty, we remove skin and leave the cartilage whole merely bending it back on itself for a smaller-looking ear. A bandage wraps around the head to ensure the new positioning. To achieve better balance, we recommend treatment to both ears even if only one has a more significant problem.

What should I expect during an otoplasty recovery?

Patients of all ages usually feel back to normal after a few hours, although the ears may ache or throb for a few days. Bandages are replace a surgical dressing after a few days, and stitches removed within the week. Adults often return to work in five days and children may return to school in seven. Otoplasty leaves a faint scar on each ear that fades with time. You should not expect your new ears to match exactly; even normal, natural ears are not identical. Complications are rare and usually minor, but may include blood clots and cartilage infection (usually treatable with antibiotics but occasionally requiring surgery).


To schedule an appointment, online consultation or learn more about Otoplasty (Ear Surgery) please Contact Us or call us at 336-768-8483

Contact Us

  • * All indicated fields must be completed.
    Please include non-medical questions and correspondence only.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Location Map:
1345A Westgate Center Drive Winston-Salem, NC 27103 Directions »