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Otoplasty / Ear Shaping

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Otoplasty / Ear Shaping Surgery in Vancouver

Otoplasty is a cosmetic procedure to correct the appearance of ears, whether they are large, protruding or misshapen (such as cauliflower or cupped ears). Depending on the individual circumstances the surgery can reposition the ears closer to the head (sometimes called “pinning”), reduce the size of the ears, correct asymmetry between ears or reshape any deformities in the cartilage to create a more pleasing appearance. After listening to your concerns and hopes, our surgeons will discuss the options and his recommendations with you during your consultation to achieve the best aesthetic outcome.

The Surgical Experience

The technique used during ear surgery will depend on the abnormality. The incision is generally placed within the natural folds on the back of the ear so scarring is minimized. The cartilage will be addressed and either removed, or reshaped. The cartilage will be secured with sutures, and may be softened to allow reshaping.

Ear surgery cases are typically performed under local anesthesia with or without sedation as an outpatient procedure in an accredited surgical facility. The entire surgery typically takes 1- 2 hours to complete. After surgery, patients will be sent home with their heads wrapped in a compression bandage, which will later be replaced with lighter bandaging. Patients will feel discomfort if they attempt to move their ears, but this will subside in a few days. Younger patients will need to be monitored so they do not touch or play with their ears during the healing process.


The average cost for an otoplasty will vary depending on the complexity of the surgical case.

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  • Are the results long lasting?

    The results following an otoplasty procedure are long lasting. However, just like any other cosmetic procedure, it will take several months to achieve the final result.

  • How long is the recovery?

    After ear shaping surgery, the patient’s head is heavily wrapped to encourage healing and proper shaping. After a few days, the surgeon will remove the dressing and apply a headband that will be worn for 3 or more weeks, depending on the extent of your surgery. The patient will need to refrain from strenuous activity and avoid any impact to the ears as they heal. Most adults can return to work after about 5-7 days.

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