Ear Surgery Can Reposition Protruding Ears on Both Kids and Adults

Like many patients, you may want to correct asymmetrical, protruding, or irregularly shaped ears with cosmetic surgery. Dr. James B. Lowe offers cosmetic ear surgery, or otoplasty, for both children and adults. Through this treatment, he can reposition and refine your ears. If needed, he can take additional steps to reshape or resize them for optimal aesthetics. At Lowe Plastic Surgery in Oklahoma City, OK, we plan each treatment down to the last detail. In this way, we can ensure safe treatment that will achieve your cosmetic goals. Otoplasty can dramatically balance very prominent facial features, giving you or your child a lifelong boost of self-confidence. 

Candidates for Ear Pinning Surgery

Ear pinning at our Oklahoma City plastic surgery office is primarily intended to improve protruding ears and to bring them closer to the side of the head. We take a comprehensive approach to treatment and can also take this opportunity to redefine the shape of the ears, either by removing cartilage or with a tissue graft.

Photo of  a young boy

Children are often exceptional candidates for otoplasty since the treatment can help them avoid bullying and discomfort through their school years. Furthermore, younger patients are able to heal more quickly than adults who undergo the same procedure. Dr. Lowe typically waits until children are about six years old to perform ear pinning. At this time, their ears will have fully developed. Cosmetic ear surgery can still be a great option for teens and adults. To qualify for treatment, patients of any age should be in good health with no chronic diseases or skin conditions.

Planning and Completing Treatment

Before performing otoplasty, Dr. Lowe will evaluate your ears and discuss your cosmetic goals. If your child is the one undergoing surgery, he will take plenty of time to explain the procedure in simple terms. Our friendly team also makes every effort to ensure each patient and their loved ones are comfortable and understand what to expect from treatment.

Before surgery, we will provide the most appropriate sedation and anesthesia. Dr. Lowe will then create incisions. These are typically placed along the crease behind the ear or the back of ear itself. Because of their subtle location, scars will be virtually invisible. The exact size and location of incisions will depend on your anatomy and specific goals.

If needed, Dr. Lowe can remove excess cartilage as a wedge from the back of the ear or from other areas. He can also graft new tissue to improve the overall shape of your ears and rebuild damaged cartilage. Once your ears have been properly refined, Dr. Lowe can use small, dissolvable stitches to bring them closer to the side of your head. When he is finished, he will close the incisions with sutures and apply the necessary bandages. 

Ear Pinning Recovery

Ear pinning is a very low-risk treatment with a short recovery. Nonetheless, it is important to take the right steps to ease discomfort and promote proper healing. Swelling and discomfort will typically continue for about 24 to 72 hours. Dr. Lowe can provide medications to ease discomfort, and ice packs can provide further relief. For the first two days, you will need to wear bandages over your ears, and you should sleep with your head elevated for about a week. You should also wear a specialized headband over the ears as directed to help your ears to stay in their new positions as you heal.

After otoplasty, ears will be much less prominent, and they will sit closer to the side of the head. They may also be smaller and more proportionate to the rest of the facial features. 

Returning to Routine

Patients should avoid strenuous exercise for two to three weeks, and children should limit their activities. Rough play or high-impact sports can interfere with healing and alter the effects of surgery. Fortunately, when you follow proper protocol and attend your follow-up appointments, recovery should proceed quickly and without incident.


Although healing will continue for several weeks to months after surgery, results should begin to be apparent in about two weeks. After otoplasty, ears will be much less prominent, and they will sit closer to the side of the head. They may also be smaller and more proportionate to the rest of the facial features, creating a more balanced appearance.. 

Understand Your Options

Otoplasty is a simple procedure with dramatic, long-lasting effects. Find out if you or your child is a candidate for this treatment. Contact Lowe Plastic Surgery online or call (405) 942-4300 to book your consultation.

James B. Lowe, MD, FACS

Lowe Plastic Surgery

Dr. Lowe is a triple board-certified surgeon with over 20 years of experience providing comprehensive cosmetic and reconstructive care. He is affiliated with several prestigious organizations:

  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons 
  • American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
  • American Board of Plastic Surgery
  • Fellow, American Association of Plastic Surgeons
  • Fellow, American College of Surgeons 
  • American Society for Surgery of the Hand 

Schedule your consultation by contacting us online or calling us at (405) 942-4300.

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