Ear Pinning (Otoplasty)

For some, ears that stand out can be a nuisance. Large or protruding ears can throw off your facial symmetry or distract from your natural beauty. Children and teens can also suffer from low self esteem or bullying due to oversized ears. Otoplasty, also known as ear pinning, is a procedure that repositions the ears closer to the sides of the head.

Dr. Jennifer Harrington is a board-certified plastic surgeon skilled in facial rejuvenation and reconstruction, including ear pinning. During your consultation, she’ll listen to your reasons for considering otoplasty and discuss the results you can expect from the procedure.

Harrington + Associates Plastic Surgery has helped children and adults from the Minneapolis-St. Paul area and beyond with otoplasty. Contact us online or call our Plymouth office today at 651-290-7600 for more information about ear pinning, including pricing.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Otoplasty?

Most people who feel self conscious about overly prominent ears can be good candidates for ear pinning surgery. The most popular reasons to consider otoplasty include:*

  • Ears are too large in proportion to the head or face
  • Ears stick out away from the sides of the head
  • Ears are lopsided or asymmetrical

Ear Pinning Incisions

Ear pinning is a customized procedure and the exact incisions used will depend upon the anatomy of your ears and the desired results. Usually, small incisions are made either inside the ear or behind the ear. Using these incisions, excess cartilage or tissue can be removed to change size and shape to the ear, as well as to reposition the ear closer to the head*. In cases where normal ear folds are missing, folds can be created with the patient’s own tissue and cartilage.*

Your Otoplasty Procedure

Ear pinning is a same-day procedure usually performed under general anesthesia, although in some cases, local anesthesia may be preferable. All surgeries are performed at an accredited surgical facility. The entire procedure takes anywhere from 1 to 2 hours per ear.

Patients who will be put under general anesthesia should plan to arrive at our surgery center 1 hour before their procedure is scheduled to begin and stay for 1 hour after. Be sure to have someone with you who can drive you home, and an adult should remain in your company for at least 24 hours following surgery.

Depending on your cosmetic goals, Dr. Harrington may recommend additional treatments to compliment your ear surgery results. People with torn or damaged ear lobes may wish to consider earlobe repair in addition to or instead of ear reshaping surgery.

Ear Pinning Recovery

Your recovery experience after otoplasty will depend on many factors, including your age, the extent of correction and how your body responds to surgery. Most people experience some discomfort during the initial few days, which can be managed with over-the-counter pain medications.* Swelling and bruising is to be expected and should subside within 2 to 3 weeks after surgery.* Dr. Harrington may ask you to wear bandages or use a topical treatment to promote optimal healing.* You should avoid getting your ears wet for about 1 week after your procedure.

You should be able to get an idea of your final results around 1 month after surgery.* However, you should take special care to not bump or otherwise disturb your ears for 6 months after getting otoplasty.

It’s important to understand any potential risks or complications associated with ear surgery before your procedure. If you notice any sudden swelling accompanied by sharp pain, notify our office immediately.

Next Steps

Ear pinning resizes, reshapes and repositions the ears.* If you have questions or would like more information, contact us online or call our Plymouth office at 651-290-7600 to request your otoplasty consultation.

*This information is for education only, and is not meant as a guarantee of results. Your results may vary.