Children born with ear deformities are often embarrassed and ridiculed by peers for the problem throughout life. Ear deformities are known by a number of different names, and while the most common cosmetic issue in children is protruding ears, “lop ear” is also a common problem that patients and parents seek help for.
Many Names, One Issue
The “lop ear” deformity is known by many names, including cup ear, and constricted ear. It describes an ear that is folded over or rolled at the top, thus prompting the many colloquial terms for the deformity. It can occur in many degrees of severity, from a mild folding to a tightly rolled appearance. Sometimes, the ears are also uneven and vary in appearance. The best way to treat this deformity is with a cosmetic surgery known as otoplasty.
Otoplasty involves a surgery performed under local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia that takes about two to three hours on average. Small incisions are made in discreet locations behind the ear to allow the surgeon to reposition cartilage and correct problems like the folded “lop” rim. Sometimes, cartilage will need to be removed or added to get the desired results.
Following surgery, the head and ears will be wrapped with a soft bandage that must be worn according to the surgeon’s instructions. Patients must take care to protect the ears until they have healed and swelling has subsided. Most normal activities can be resumed within 1-2 weeks, but strenuous exercise and some other activities should be postponed further.
The Best Age for Treatment
Many parents are anxious to head off almost inevitable bullying, and this instinct is well-founded. Children who are teased and tormented by peers often struggle with making friends and cultivating healthy self-esteem and confidence. Because of this, there is often a push to have otoplasty performed as early as possible. Fortunately, the ears mature at an early age, making it possible to perform the operation on very young children. Most plastic surgeons agree that it is best to operate around the age of four or five years old, before bullying can begin in earnest. Of course, surgery at such a young age has its challenges and can be difficult for both parent and child, but children are resilient, and heal quickly from the procedure. Making the decision for your child can be challenging, and you should not rush into anything. Make sure that all closely involved parties are in agreement, and seek out as much information as you can before you more forward.
Seeking otoplasty for yourself? Many young adults did not get the opportunity to have their ear deformities addressed as children and seek surgical correction later in life. While cartilage is slightly less pliable in older patients, it is still a common procedure that routinely produces good outcomes.
Choosing a Qualified and Compassionate Surgeon
It takes a skilled and experienced surgeon to produce consistently good results for otoplastypatients, and it take an exceptional doctor to have the compassion and patience to work successfully with children. If you are seeking otoplasty for your young child, then you naturally want nothing but the best. Choosing your child’s surgeon is the most important decision you will make during the process, and meticulous research and screening will help you feel at ease and trust the surgeon you choose. Consultations will help you establish rapport and ask questions about the procedure.
If you are ready to begin consulting with board certified plastic surgeons, then callRevesse in Toronto and schedule a consultation with Dr. Robert A. Mounsey. Dr. Mounsey is a skilled facial plastic surgeon with extensive experience performing otoplasty. Dr. Mounsey has a comforting bedside manner and a reputation for producing beautiful, natural results. For more information, and to schedule your appointment, call416-438-2499 today.