If you’re self-conscious about the appearance of your ears, a Pinnaplasty can make them look less prominent and improve their shape. Pinnaplasty is a straightforward, minor surgical procedure to pin back and/or change the shape of your ears. It is an effective treatment for prominent, asymmetrical or large ears.
What are the benefits of a Pinnaplasty?
- It is a minor surgical procedure, usually carried out under local anaesthetic (but general anaesthetic can be used as an alternative).
- The procedure is fast, lasting approximately one hour.
- Recovery is quick, and you can go home soon after having the procedure.
- Post-operative discomfort is usually mild and can be managed easily.
- The results are permanent.
- Patients report improved self-confidence once the results are visible.
What happens during a Pinnaplasty?
If you’re having a local anaesthetic, it will be injected into your eyebrow. Dr Vlok will then make small incisions at the back of each ear, remove some skin, and re-shape, trim, fold or remove some of the cartilage that lies under the skin.
The ears are then firmly fixed in place, closer to the side of your head, using stitches. If necessary, small incisions may also be made at the front of each ear to change their shape.
After the procedure has been carried out, the wounds are stitched and covered with dressings.
What after-care is required?
You’ll need to come back after a few days to have the dressings removed.
You’ll then be fitted with a tight-fitting headband that protects your ears and holds them in their new position. This needs to be worn 24 hours a day for a week to ten days after your pinnaplasty.
When the headband is removed, your ears will be cleaned and examined to ensure that they are healing well.
Are there any side effects?
Most people experience some discomfort after a pinnaplasty. However, the side effects of the procedure are usually mild and can be easily controlled with other-the-counter pain relief medicine. The potential side effects include:
Some patients report numbness of the skin and/or tingling in the ears. These side effects disappear after a few weeks.
Your ears might also feel sensitive and look red. This should resolve by itself in a short period of time. After the headband has been removed, there may be some bruising or swelling which takes a few weeks to heal.
How much downtime is needed?
Although you’ll be able to go home on the day of your pinnaplasty, you’ll need to rest at home for 1-2 weeks. You can go back to work after the headband has been removed approximately 10 days after surgery.
Refrain from strenuous exercise, swimming and sports for six weeks after the procedure.
When will the results be visible?
You’ll see the full results of your Pinnaplasty within six weeks. Once healed, the small scars, which are concealed in a groove behind the ears, are almost invisible.
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