Otoplasty in Tampa and St. Petersburg, FL
Your ears can either enhance your facial balance or detract people’s attention from your other features and great personality. Children are often the subject of teasing due to ears that are too large, out of proportion or oddly shaped. As a dual-board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon and otolaryngologist, Dr. Dean G. Davis has the expertise you need for corrective otoplasty, or ear surgery, in the Tampa, St. Petersburg, and surrounding areas.
What Is Otoplasty?
Otoplasty, or ear surgery, is the reshaping of the outer ear, or pinna, to improve appearance or correct abnormalities. The surgery will remedy any birth defects and injuries or damage to the ear that was caused by trauma. This procedure can be performed for cosmetic or reconstructive purposes for individuals of any age.
Benefits of Otoplasty
The goal of otoplasty is to ensure that your ears are proportionate to your face so that unnecessary attention is not drawn to them. The benefits of this surgery include:
- Aesthetically pleasing face
- Increase in self-confidence
- No need to hide your ears with a hat or hairstyle anymore
- Sense of normalcy for children who are bullied
- Short recovery period
How Is Otoplasty Performed?
Otoplasty is performed while you are awake but under local anesthesia to eliminate the need for a stay in the hospital. Most otoplasty procedures are completed as outpatient, taking only one to two hours. Heavier sedation might be implemented for children to ensure that they remain still throughout the entire surgery.
Although every case is unique, the procedure starts with an incision in your ear where your head and lobe meet. Then, Dr. Davis removes the excess cartilage and skin, so your ear can reform into a better shape. If a permanent suture is required, he will pin your ear. Without removing any cartilage, Dr. Davis might use sutures to pin portions of your ear together. When he has the desired shape, he will put sutures in place that help reform your ear as it heals.
During otoplasty where you only want the size of your ears reduced, Dr. Davis makes an incision at the front, inside of your ear, so the cut cannot be seen. Dissolvable sutures will be put in place, which means that there will be no scars after your ear heals.
Preparing for Otoplasty
There are several things you should do before you undergo otoplasty, including:
- Make plans for someone responsible to drive you to our office before the surgery and home after the surgery.
- Avoid nicotine for a minimum four weeks before the surgery because it is known to hinder healing and could impact the outcome of otoplasty. Even the use of nicotine patches is not recommended.
- If you get a skin infection or feel sick prior to the surgery, make sure that you let us know.
- Take at least one week off from school or work for the surgery and recovery period.
- Stop using any blood thinners or medications that contain aspirin for two weeks before the procedure.
The successful results of ear surgery also depend on your care during the recovery and downtime. You should adhere to the following guidelines:
- Avoid vigorous activity
- Do not wash your hair with shampoo for one week
- Do not sleep on your side
- Keep your head cool and elevated
Is Otoplasty Right for Me?
You or someone you love may be a good candidate for ear surgery if you can give a positive answer to at least one of the following questions:
- Do your child’s peers tease or bully them because of how their ears look?
- Are you self-conscious about how your ears look?
- Do you hide your ears with accessories?
How Much Does Otoplasty Cost?
Otoplasty is usually considered an elective surgery by insurance companies, meaning you likely don’t have benefits to cover the cost. We offer CareCredit® financing to help you cover out of pocket costs. Dr. Davis accepts payment via cash, check, or credit card, as well. For more information about financial options, give us a call.
What to Expect During Your Consultation
The safety and success of otoplasty depends a lot on how open and honest you are with Dr. Davis. He will ask numerous questions regarding your health and your medications. Also during the consultation, Dr. Davis will conduct a physical examination and talk with you about available treatment options and potential outcomes.
Otoplasty is recommended for children and adults who desire corrective and reparative ear surgery. If you would like to learn more about the procedure, please contact our office to schedule a consultation.