Otoplasty—The Surgical Procedure That’s Gaining Popularity

If you’ve ever been called (or heard someone else called) Dumbo or Mickey Mouse—you know why people request otoplasty. Otoplasty is a cosmetic surgical procedure that’s performed in both adults and children to correct protruding ears or reduce the size of or reshape abnormally large ears.

Ears greatly impact your appearance because they harmonize your face and head—and put everything into balance. People undergoing otoplasty are looking for ears that lie close to the head and extend from the level of the brow to the base of the nose, which is the ideal position that people appear most attractive.

On the rise
Over 4,100 otoplasty procedures were performed in 2012, according to statistics from the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. While it may not be as prevalent as rhinoplasty or face lifts, seven percent of surgeons report that they’ve seen an increase in interest in otoplasty procedures in 2012.

Who wants it?
Men, women, and children are opting for otoplasty. For men, otoplasty is one of the top 10 most common procedures performed, requested as often as hair transplantation, forehead lift, and ablative skin resurfacing, says the AAFPRS. Women are often interested in the procedure before their wedding; four percent of women seeking pre-wedding plastic surgery request otoplasty. With all eyes on them on their big day, women feel like pre-wedding is the time to correct any lingering insecurities about their appearance so they can look their most beautiful.

Great results
Post-surgery, patients enjoy a new ear shape and position that makes them feel attractive and renews their self-esteem. Due to the naturally hidden position of the incision during otoplasty (in the crease, behind the ears), scarring is minimal and not visible. Hearing is also not affected. Although medical insurance doesn’t pay for cosmetic procedures, except in the event of birth defects or traumatic injuries, most people pay about $3,500 for otoplasty. However, most patients say that the self-confidence they gain is worth it.

“Ear surgery can offer a big increase in self esteem for most patients which is why it continues to be a popular procedure,” said Robert M. Kellman, MD, President of the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. “When considering otoplasty for an adult or child, patients and parents should consult with a board certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in plastic surgery of the face, head and neck.”

The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is the world’s largest specialty association for facial plastic surgery.  It represents more than 2,700 facial plastic and reconstructive surgeons throughout the world. The AAFPRS is a National Medical Specialty Society of the American Medical Association (AMA), and holds an official seat in both the AMA House of Delegates and the American College of Surgeons board of governors. AAFPRS members are board certified surgeons whose focus is surgery of the face, head, and neck. AAFPRS members subscribe to a code of ethics. In addition, the AAFPRS provides consumers with free information and brochures and a list of qualified facial plastic surgeons in any area by visiting the AAFPRS web site, www.aafprs.org.

For more information, or to schedule an interview with an AAFPRS spokesperson, please contact the Academy’s public relations firm, Melissa Kelz Communications at 646-450-5359 and ask to speak to Patty – pattymathews@kelzpr.com or to Melissa –melissa@kelzpr.com