Otoplasty, sometimes referred to as ear surgery, is an incredibly popular procedure proudly offered at Nuance Cosmetic Surgery in Folsom, CA. It is designed to enhance your overall appearance by changing the positioning of your ears, shrinking them, or improving their symmetry. If you feel self-conscious about the appearance of your ears, you’re in the right place. Today, we’re looking more closely at this procedure, including how long it takes.
How Long Does Otoplasty Take?
If you are only interested in making modest changes to the appearance of your ears, your procedure may only take an hour to complete. However, it may take a couple of hours to complete your procedure if there are several significant changes that need to be made. We will give you a better idea of how long you can expect your procedure to take during your initial consultation once we have assessed your concerns and discussed your goals.
What Should I Expect During My Procedure?
Before your procedure begins, we will verify that your skin is not irritated and confirm that you are healthy enough for surgery. If you are ready for surgery, we will sterilize the incision sites and administer either general anesthesia or local anesthesia and a sedative. Regardless of the medication or medications you receive, you will be asleep and completely comfortable throughout the entire procedure.
Once you are numb, we will make a tiny incision behind your ear so we can access the cartilage. Then, we will sculpt your cartilage, bending it back towards your head and holding it in place with permanent sutures. Once we have made all of the necessary changes to the size, shape, and positioning of your ear, the incision will be sutured closed. Then, we will apply surgical dressing to the area to keep the incision site clean as it heals.
How Soon Can I Expect To Enjoy the Results of My Procedure?
During the first several days following your ear pinning surgery, you will need to wear a surgical dressing around your ears. Once that dressing can be removed, you will be able to see a significant improvement in the appearance of your ears. However, it may be several months before your ears heal fully and you can enjoy the full benefits of this procedure.
How Long Can I Expect the Results of My Procedure To Last?
Ear surgery provides very long-lasting results. In some cases, otoplasty results last a lifetime. However, you should understand that several factors can impact the longevity of your results. For instance, you can feel very confident that the shape and positioning of your new cartilage will remain for the rest of your life. However, a traumatic injury to the ears can affect their shape. Furthermore, you may experience skin sagging due to the natural aging process.
How Long Does Recovery From This Procedure Take?
Individual recovery timelines vary based on several factors, including age, overall health, and adherence to postoperative guidelines. Typically, you will need to wear a protective surgical dressing for only a few days following your procedure. Additionally, you should not be surprised if you need to apply a cold compress to your ear area and take analgesics during the first three to seven days post-op.
By the second week, you can expect to be back at work. However, you may not be able to return to work within two weeks if you have a physically demanding job. You should avoid strenuous activity for at least four weeks following your procedure, including exercise that makes you sweat and struggle to breathe. Moreover, you will not be able to play contact sports or do anything else that may irritate your incision sites for at least a month post-op.
What Can I Do To Recover Faster?
If you are anxious to get back to your usual routine as quickly as possible, there are several things you can do during your recovery process to speed up your rate of healing. One of the most effective steps you can take is to stay hydrated. If your urine is dark, you are not consuming enough hydrating fluids, and you should drink a glass of water or snack on produce with a high water content. It is also essential to take all of your medications exactly as prescribed.
Another effective step you can take to recover faster is to make sure that you are well-nourished during your recovery process. You should eat and drink plenty of protein every day and get your RDA of vitamin C and zinc. Moreover, you should apply a cold compress to your ear for 10 to 15 minutes at a time several times per day during the first few days following surgery. Additionally, it is very important that you get plenty of sleep and avoid overexertion.
Am I a Good Candidate for This Procedure?
We will determine if you are a good otoplasty candidate during your initial consultation. We cannot say for certain that you will qualify for surgery until we have discussed your medical history and lifestyle thoroughly to verify the safety of this procedure for you. We need to confirm that there are no contraindications, like high blood pressure or a bleeding disorder, that would disqualify you from surgery.
We also need to take a close look at your ears and talk about what goals you would like to accomplish with surgery. You need to have realistic expectations about the results of the procedure to be considered a good candidate. Depending on the extent of the changes you want to make, you may not be able to achieve the results you are looking for with this procedure.
What Is the Best Age To Undergo This Procedure?
There is no hard-and-fast rule regarding the age at which you should undergo ear surgery. Commonly, it is performed on children because children tend to heal from surgery faster. Therefore, adults don’t have to worry about being too young to qualify for surgery. There is also no need to worry about being considered too old for surgery as long as you are healthy enough. However, you should know that the younger you are, the sooner you can expect to recover.
What Contraindications Should I Be Aware of?
To reiterate, we need to verify that this procedure will be safe for you to determine if you are a good ear surgery candidate. There are several contraindications that have the potential to result in an unsafe procedure. For example, you will be considered a poor surgery candidate if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Additionally, clotting and bleeding disorders will disqualify you from surgery.
Furthermore, you may not be considered a good candidate for this procedure if you suffer from certain heart conditions or allergies to certain medications. Moreover, you may not be a great fit for surgery if you have a history of keloid scarring or suffer from a condition that slows wound healing. Additionally, someone with an active ear infection will need to postpone surgery.
How Will I Need To Prepare for Surgery?
If you think otoplasty would be a good fit for you, the most important preparation step you will need to take is to attend a preliminary consultation with a board-certified surgeon. During this consultation, we will give you a comprehensive list of preparation guidelines you will need to follow, and we will advise you on how to care for yourself after surgery. Another very important preparation step you must take is to not consume alcohol or tobacco products temporarily.
Additionally, you must discontinue the use of any blood-thinning drugs or supplements for a while prior to surgery. If your doctor has you taking a blood thinner every day as a preventative treatment for a heart condition, you should check with them that you can safely stop taking your medication for a short time. Furthermore, it is extremely important that you arrive for transportation to and from your procedure. You will not be able to drive yourself home.
Schedule Your Initial Evaluation Today
You can generally expect your ear surgery to take between one and two hours depending on the scope of the procedure. If you think you could benefit from altering the appearance of your ears, contact us now at Nuance Cosmetic Surgery in Folsom, CA to schedule your initial otoplasty consultation. We have proudly served the residents of Folsom, Sacramento, and surrounding communities for years, and we can’t wait to help you.