What is Ear Surgery?
Large, protruding, uneven, or misshapen ears can present a self-esteem challenge to patients of any age, but this is especially true during the formative years of childhood where a positive self-image is critical to a child’s personal and psychological growth. Otoplasty (also known as ear reshaping surgery) corrects the size, shape, and position of the ears, including protruding or deformed ears, with ease and relatively little discomfort. The set-back otoplasty by double board-certified facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Eugene "Gene" Alford, involves either removal or reconstruction of the cartilage and skin of the ear through an incision that’s placed at the back of the ear. Otoplasty at Alford Facial Plastic Surgery in Houston, TX can be performed on patients of any age, starting as young as 5 or 6, but it can have dramatic psychological and physical benefits in both children and adults. Dr. Gene can also help patients who need repair or reconstruction on their ear or ear lobe after an accident or injury, including stretched ear lobes.
"Gene Alford is always honest and trustworthy, which is why I respect his opinion."- Anonymous / Office Visit / Jan 15, 2018
"Had the pleasure of working with Dr Alford during my training. An excellent surgeon and human being!"- L.B. / Facebook / Apr 26, 2018
"Dr. Alford is my favorite doctor of all time, and I've had a LOT of doctors. When others docs told me there was nothing they could do to repair my nose after cancer resection caused it to deviate and sit beneath my eye, he scoffed and said he could help. His life experiences have made him a doctor with rare insight into what his patients are experiencing ... losing the life we once had, handling depression, and trying to make the most of what we have. He is a kind and gentle man but tells the truth about expectations. I cannot say enough good things about him. If you have found him and decide to be one of his patients, you are a lucky person indeed."- S.H. / Google / Apr 06, 2018
"Facial and Nose Reconstruction - Dr. Alford is my favorite doctor of all time, and I've had a LOT of doctors. When others docs told me there was nothing they could do to repair my nose after cancer resection caused it to deviate and sit beneath my eye, he scoffed and said he could help. He has been involved in four reconstructive surgeries (so far) to piece my face back together, the last of which (Phase 3 of a forehead..."- S. / RealSelf / Apr 06, 2018
"Dr Alford has been my ENT for almost 20 years. I would not ever see anyone else! He is very high skill, highly compassionate and great bedside manner."- T.F. / Google / Mar 30, 2018
Most ear surgeries take about 2 hours, but this varies in each case. Incisions are usually made in the back or inner folds of the ear so cartilage and tissue can be removed or added to improve the shape or projection. Dr. Gene may also adjust the position of 1 or both of the ears to match each other and balance with the rest of the face. Once the ears are corrected, Dr. Gene will close the incisions and send the patient to a recovery area.
You will be discharged from the hospital approximately 2-4 hours after surgery once you are stable and your pain is well controlled so that you may recover in the comfort of your home. You should return to Alford Facial Plastic Surgery for a follow-up appointment in 1 week so Dr. Gene can check the appearance of your ears and the progress of your recovery. Most patients only need 1 – 2 weeks for recovery time before they return to their normal activities, but you should take as much time as you need to avoid complications.
The results of ear surgery are usually visible right away and continue to improve as the swelling decreases and the area heals. Your newly shaped, sized, positioned, or repaired ear should be long lasting, unless you have a future injury or accident. Any problems on concerns about your results can be discussed with Dr. Gene so you are satisfied with your ear surgery
What Does Ear Surgery Cost?
Ear surgery typically costs around $4,500 - $5,500, but this may be higher for a more complex case that involves grafting or other advanced techniques. During your initial consultation, Dr. Gene can breakdown the expenses (hospital fee, anesthesia, and other) and your cost estimate.
Plan Your Procedure
- Average Cost
- $4,500 - $5,500
- Recovery Time
- 1 - 2 Weeks
- Average Procedure Time
- 2 Hours
- Post-op Follow-up
- 1 Week
- Procedure Recovery Location
Ear Surgery FAQs
- Cauliflower ears
- Disproportionate ear size
- Ear asymmetry
- Earlobe reduction
- Ears that stick out
- Elf ears
- Injury or trauma to the ear
- Odd ear placement
- Overly large ears
- Overly small ears
- Stretched, torn earlobes
Ear surgery can help anyone who does not like the size, shape, or position of their ears. Otoplasty can also repair the ear and ear lobe after trauma or injury. Many patients want their ear lobes repaired after they have been stretched by heavy earrings or ear gauges. Patients are usually younger, about 5 or 6 years old or whenever their ear cartilage is stable enough for surgery, but adults are also good candidates if they have struggled with the appearance of their ears or their ears have become deformed after an accident or trauma.
Incisions and Scars?
The surgical incisions for ear surgery are usually well-hidden behind the ears in the hairline or in the folds of the ear. If you keep the stitches clean and follow Dr. Gene’s scar management tips, the scars should fade quickly and blend into the normal skin until they are almost invisible.
Ear surgery can be very helpful in restoring your confidence, but some patients may benefit from adding nose surgery (rhinoplasty) to better balance their facial features. Older otoplasty patients may consider including a facelift since the incisions are similar and they can have a fully refreshed look that boosts their confidence. Dr. Gene can help you determine the best cosmetic procedures for your concerns and goals.