Ear Surgery (Otoplasty) Near Chattanooga
Also Serving Georgia Communities Cartersville, Dalton, and Calhoun
Otoplasty is the surgical correction of prominent or misshapen ears to restore a more pleasing shape and size. It can also treat defects or deformities that appear after birth or are caused by an injury. Dr. Joel Williams is a talented and experienced otoplasty surgeon who delivers results that look natural. He often works with children who have disproportionately large or protruding ears; he's able to save them from teasing and taunting of other children that is common during elementary and middle school.
It is not uncommon for young children (around ages five to six) with large or protruding ears to undergo otoplasty; in fact, treating this condition before a child enters kindergarten may save them from cruel teasing. It's important to wait for the child's cartilage to stop developing, so a medical examination is necessary.
Dr. Williams is also happy to treat adults who would like their ears reshaped or reduced in size. Chattanooga otoplasty candidates should be in good health and not smoke (or at least quit for two weeks prior to surgery and for a short period following surgery). Those who have a serious health condition should talk to Dr. Williams about this during the surgical consultation. Some conditions can increase the risk of complications during or after ear surgery so it's important to be forthcoming about all medical history, whether it seems relevant or not.
The Otoplasty Procedure
Surgery is most often performed at Dr. Williams' outpatient surgical facility in Dalton, GA. The steps of the procedure vary, depending on the aesthetic concern being addressed. If Dr. Williams is correcting protruding ears, he will make incisions behind and within the ears and reshape or remove excess cartilage to position the ears closer to the head. The placement of the incisions ensures that any scars are concealed within the natural creases of the skin.
If Dr. Williams is treating large ears, he will typically make incisions on the front of the ear. Through these incisions, he removes excess skin and cartilage and reshapes the remaining cartilage.
After Dr. Williams has made the desired alterations, he closes the incisions with stitches or sutures and bandages the ears for proper healing.
Recovering from Otoplasty
It's normal for patients to feel slight discomfort while recovering from ear surgery, but this can be controlled with prescription pain medication and will dissipate quickly. For the first several days, otoplasty patients should rest comfortably and keep the head elevated, avoiding any straining, bending or lifting until Dr. Williams has approved it. The dressings or bandages should also be left in place until Dr. Williams advises that it is safe to remove them.
Benefits and Risks of Otoplasty
Treating ears that protrude, are abnormally large or otherwise deformed can have a tremendous impact on a person's self-esteem. It can also help a child avoid embarrassment or ridicule from insensitive classmates.
"It is remarkable and very rewarding to see a child blossom and become more self-confident after ear surgery."
- Dr. Joel A Williams
Potential risks of otoplasty include blood clots, asymmetry, poor wound healing, irregularities in the skin's contour and anesthesia-related complications. Dr. Williams will discuss all of these risks prior to surgery and address all of the patient's concerns so they feel comfortable about the decision.
To schedule a consultation to discuss otoplasty, please contact Dr. Williams' plastic surgery practice today.