A Closer Look at Otoplasty

ear surgeryWhile plastic surgery is most often associated with procedures like facelifts and breast augmentation, there are a number of additional procedures that can have a positive impact on your appearance. One such procedure is otoplasty, a surgical procedure designed to improve the appearance of a patient’s ears. Take a closer look at this procedure and the many benefits it can have.

  • What is otoplasty? Otoplasty is a surgical procedure designed to address concerns about the size or shape of one’s ears. This procedure serves two primary functions; reducing the size of overly large ears and moving ears that are too prominent closer to the head.
  • How is it performed? Otoplasty is typically performed on an outpatient basis and lasts for roughly two hours. Your surgeon will begin by creating a small incision behind the ear, then bending and sculpting cartilage to match your desired appearance.
  • Am I a candidate? If you’re in good general health but are unhappy with the appearance of your ears, you may be a suitable candidate for this procedure. Patients seek out otoplasty to address a number of different concerns, including cupped ear, large or protruding ears, lop ear, torn or stretched earlobes and more.
  • What is the recovery period like? Following this procedure, your surgeon will use sutures to help keep the ear in position until it is healed. After a few days, your bandages will be removed.  Stitches will dissolve on their own within 2 weeks, and most patients are able to return to their daily activities at this time.
  • Are there any complications? As with any surgical procedure, there are some potential complications that may arise. However, these are rare and typically minor. Complications can often be avoided by closely following your doctor’s postoperative instructions.

Ready to Learn More about the Otoplasty Procedure? Contact Dr. Ryan Frank Today.

If you are interested in otoplasty in Calgary, contact us today. We can be reached at (403) 245-1228. We look forward to hearing from you.

What to Expect from Cosmetic Ear Surgery (Otoplasty)

ear surgeryEar surgery, (otoplasty is the medical term)  is a cosmetic procedure to improve the appearance of the ears. Otoplasty does not affect hearing, and provides significant psychological benefits to anyone who is teased about ear size and/or shape, has had a serious ear injury, or simply wants to improve his or her appearance. Ear surgery is most often performed to set unusually protruding ears closer to the head (ear pinning) or to reduce the size of abnormally large ears.

Candidates for Ear Surgery

People of any age who feel self-conscious about their ears may be good candidates for otoplasty, although it is typically performed on children between 5 and 14 years old. Ears are almost fully developed by the of age 5, so early surgery can help create self-confidence when a child begins going to school. Not everyone is a candidate for otoplasty; a patient must be in good general health, and have realistic expectations of what it can do.


Otoplasty generally takes 2 -3 hours, and is performed on an outpatient basis. The type of anesthesia used typically depends on the age of the patient, with general anesthesia recommended for very young patients, and local anesthesia with or without a sedative is recommended for older children and adults.

Incisions are placed in the natural folds and creases of the ear to reduce visibility. After the procedure is complete, bandages will be applied to assist in he healing process and to aid the reshaped cartilage from reverting to its original form. Bandages are not to be removed until Dr. Frank has instructed the patient to do so, and healing is complete.


Although the ears may ache or throb for a few days, patients usually feel normal within hours of the surgery’s completion. Medication is prescribed to help alleviate any discomfort.  Otoplasty patients should avoid sleeping on their sides for the first 2 weeks after surgery, and are instructed to wear a toque/headband for the first month following the procedure.  About 1 week following otoplasty, most patients are able to return to their normal routines.

Associated Risks

Complications of otoplasty are rare and usually minor. Some patients report a change in skin sensation, which generally resolves itself overtime. There is a small possibility that a patient may be unsatisfied with their results following surgery – Dr. Frank will do everything in his power to make his patients happy and is very reasonable when it comes to the need for revisions.   Patients should not expect ears to be completely symmetrical because this does not occur naturally. Slight variances between the appearance of ears is expected.

Otoplasty in Calgary

If you are interested in otoplasty, or would like to learn more about any of the other cosmetic surgery procedures we offer, contact Dr. Frank today. We can be reached at (403) 245-1228. We look forward to hearing from you!

Ear Surgery FAQ

ear surgeryEar surgery, also known as otoplasty, can correct a variety of aesthetic conditions with a relatively short downtime compared to other cosmetic procedures.

To find out more about ear surgery and what it can do for you, check out the below FAQ:

What makes ears appear larger than average?

There are several factors that make ears look larger or more prominent. Firstly, the projection of one’s ears, or how far they “stick out”, can make them more noticeable and make a person feel self-conscious about their appearance.

Others have ears that are larger in size in relation to their head and facial features. Both of these conditions can be hereditary, but can be easily resolved through otoplasty. However, patients should be aware that otoplasty will not change one’s hearing.

My ears seem to be getting bigger. Can otoplasty fix this?

Over time, even though most of our facial features have reached their full development in adulthood, cartilage and skin in the nose and ears can continue to grow, change and elongate. This is a natural part of aging, and can be influenced by genetics, gravity and earrings.

For example, wearing large, heavy earrings takes its toll on your earlobes over time, causing them to stretch downward, and the pierced hole itself can also become stretched out and extended. Otoplasty can decrease the size of the earlobes and diminish the appearance of large creases and wrinkles.

What other conditions can otoplasty correct?

Along with resetting prominent, protruding ears closer to the head and reducing the size of large ears, otoplasty can also be beneficial in addressing the conditions such as lop ear, or when the top of the ear folds downward or inward, and cupped ear – when the ears are too small in relation to the head.

Another condition that otoplasty can correct is called shell ear, or when certain normal features of the ear are missing. For example, there can be a lack of an outer curve in the cartilage, which makes the ear look malformed. Ear surgery can also correct torn earlobes or ears that are misshapen due to an injury. Dr. Frank also constructs new ears for patients who are missing them from injury or other causes.


Ear Surgery in Calgary

If you are interested in otoplasty or would like to learn more about any of the other cosmetic surgery procedures we offer, contact us today. We can be reached at (403) 245-1228. We look forward to hearing from you!


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