How is the surgery (Pinnaplasty) carried out?

Our preferred technique is to use the anterior scoring method where the front surface of the ear cartilage is gently scored “delicate scratches” and this results in the cartilage bending in the opposite direction. The position of the cartilage is secured using sutures.

 The cartilage is approached by an incision behind the ear and the skin raised off the back of the ear exposing the cartilage

The ear cartilage is then incised and the front surface of cartilage is exposed.

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The anterior (front) surface of the cartilage is scored in the region of the antihelix where there should be a fold This results in the cartilage bending in the opposite direction

Sometimes sutures are also used to secure the “bowl” of the ear to the covering of the bone behind the ear to secure it in place (Furness sutures)

 Possible complications:

Haematoma (bleeding under the skin) - presents as pain and needs urgent attention as if left untreated, Perichondritis (inflammation) and deformity of the cartilage may occur. If your child needs continual regular pain control then they should be seen to have the dressing removed and the ear checked

Infection as with all surgical procedures, but  this is rare.

Sometimes the ears will not be exactly matched as this will depend on the healing process. The position of the ear may also change over time