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The shape of the ear plays an important role in the overall esthetic of the face. Although they are not as visible from the front, people with abnormally shaped or sized ears draw unwanted attention which causes those people to become self-conscious. Subtle changes made to the ear shape can result in a dramatic effect on the overall beauty and composition of the entire face.

Types of Ear Surgery

The conditions which require ear surgery can be categorized into either congenital malformations or injuries undergone after birth. One in 3,000 people are born with congenital ear malformation. Surgical methodologies vary based on the current shape or condition of the ears and therefore require differences in procedure and recovery time.



Microtia is a congenital deformity which occurs in 1 in out of 8,000 births. Patients with microtia usually have only external ears without an ear canal and only half of the hearing sense of normal people.
There is no known cause of microtia. A child whose parents or siblings have microtia has a 1-2% chance of developing microtia. About 95% of patients have unilateral microtia while the other 5% have bilateral microtia. The appearance of the ear shape is very different from normal ones, which gives a negative impression to others.
Oftentimes a child셲 rib cartilage is not firm enough to use for ear reconstruction surgery. There is also a possibility of the cartilage getting absorbed into the skin and losing the shape that was constructed during the surgery. Additionally, the part of the chest where rib cartilage was taken from can develop into an abnormal shape. Therefore, Rib Cartilage Ear Reconstruction is recommended for those older than 12 years of age.
The surgery usually requires three stages of reconstruction,
  1. Stage 1: Surgeons extract cartilage from the rib of the child and use it to sculpt the framework of the reconstructed ear. (5 hour surgery requiring general anesthesia)
  2. Stage 2: Surgeons form the earlobe and elevate the ear using a skin graft. (3-4 hour surgery requiring general anesthesia)
  3. Stage 3: Surgeons form the tragus using a skin / cartilage graft and form the concha using a skin graft. (3 hour surgery requiring sedation, anesthesia, and local anesthesia)
Overview of Microtia surgery
Overview of Microtia surgery
Optimal age for surgery: ages 12 and up
Length of surgery: Stage 1 (5 hours), Stage 2 (3-4 hours), Stage 3 (3 hours)
Stitch removal: 7 days after surgery
Anesthesia: General anesthesia

Precautions after Surgery

  1. 1.Recovery
    Normally, only ambulatory treatment is required, without hospitalization. While the recovery time can vary depending upon the severity of the condition and the type of the surgery, it is usually possible to return to normal daily activities after surgery, such as eating and washing your face. Please be careful not to get water in the ear when taking a shower. Stitches will be removed a week after surgery. Try not to lie on your side during the recovery period.
  2. 2.Recovery process
    Just like other plastic surgeries, you will experience paresthesia (abnormal sensations) on the treated area for a while after surgery. The senses will recover as the swelling and bruising fade away. Permanent sensory loss is very rare. Ears can seem a little bigger due to swelling after surgery but will return to their normal size over the course of a few weeks. Please avoid going to the sauna or wearing hats which can press down the ears before they are fully recovered.