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Otoplasty is a cosmetic procedure used to change the shape of the ear. Ears which are too prominent usually have several anatomic problems, including an excessive projection of the conchal wall (in the bowl of the outer ear), unfurling of the natural folds of the upper ear, as well as on occasion overprojection of the earlobe.

Surgery needs to address any or all of these defects. This can easily be carried out under local anesthetic, or , if the patient requests it, under intravenous sedation.

An incision is made on the back side of the ear, and then the skin is partly peeled back to access the problematic cartilage. A crescent shaped wedge is taken from the conchal wall, and then the cut cartilage edges are brought together with sutures. In order to create an elegant fold in the upper ear, a tunnel is created in front, and then the cartilage is lightly softened with an otobrader. A series of radiating sutures are then placed in an arcade to create a natural looking fold. If required, the ear lobe can be positioned closer to the head as well.

Careful post operative care, including wearing of a head band to protect the newly positioned cartilage, is essential. The ear must be protected from any trauma for 6 weeks to allow the cartilage to setup in their new position.