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Ear Reshaping

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St. Luke’s otoplasty surgeons are among the greater Lehigh Valley region’s most skilled and experienced. Our providers are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, having completed extensive training that leads to a rigorous certification process. And due to our large network, we have access to the latest technology. These resources allow us to perform minimally invasive procedures with results you can be proud of.

What is ear reshaping?

Ear reshaping adjusts the ears’ shape, size, or position. During this procedure, the surgeon will make incisions either on the ears’ backs or inner creases, allowing them to remove excess skin, reposition cartilage, or repair earlobes.

Commonly referred to as an otoplasty, this procedure reduces ear size, fixes misshapen cartilage, and corrects malformations. An otoplasty can be performed on anyone with fully developed ears, regardless of age.

If you want to learn more about ear reshaping, or schedule a consultation with a plastic surgeon in the greater Lehigh Valley region who does ear reshaping, contact St. Luke’s Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. Our team can provide you with the necessary guidance and expertise to achieve your aesthetic goals.


Otoplasty candidates typically include adults who have:

  • Ears that stick out too far
  • Disproportionately large ears
  • Asymmetrical ears
  • Dissatisfaction with previous ear surgery

An otoplasty can improve your ears’ appearance and correct congenital anomalies. So if your ears are a source of insecurity, ear reshaping is an excellent option to address these concerns and enhance your self-confidence.

Schedule a consultation with a St. Luke’s otoplasty surgeon in the greater Lehigh Valley region to determine if an otoplasty is right for you.

Having ear reshaping can positively impact your well-being and self-confidence. Here are several of the most commonly report benefits:

  • Improved facial symmetry
  • Reduced functional issues
  • Balanced ear proportions
  • Smaller, flatter ears (including ear pinning)
  • More natural earlobe shape (ear lobe repair)

Ear reshaping not only improves ear symmetry but also boosts overall satisfaction with your appearance by creating a more balanced and harmonious look.

As with all surgeries, ear reshaping has risks, including:

  • Asymmetry
  • Changes in sensation
  • Infections
  • Overcorrection
  • Scarring
  • Bleeding

Your surgeon will review a complete list of risks before getting your consent.

Before the procedure

In the time leading up to your ear reshaping at St. Luke’s Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, you can take steps to make your procedure as safe as possible. These include discussing the following topics at your surgical consultation:

  • Goals and expectations
  • Surgical options
  • Results
  • Recovery

As part of your consultation, your surgeon will also do a complete evaluation, which may include:

  • Ordering lab work
  • Taking “before” photos
  • Assessing medical conditions, allergies, and medical limitations
  • Reviewing medications, supplements, alcohol, tobacco, or drug use

A week before the procedure, you can prepare at home by:

  • Filling prescriptions
  • Purchasing necessary medical supplies
  • Coordinating transportation and meals
  • Staying hydrated

You should arrive early on the day of your procedure to avoid travel delays.

During the procedure

Ear reshaping can be done on ears of all shapes and sizes. The techniques for this procedure depend on the anatomy of your ears, the extent of cartilage, and the level of malformation.

Ear augmentation

In an ear augmentation surgery, the surgeon will make incisions behind the ears to add cartilage grafts or implants. This procedure is especially beneficial for those with underdeveloped or disproportionate ears. By addressing your concerns, ear augmentation surgery can help you embrace your features with confidence.

Prominent ear correction

In prominent ear correction surgery (also known as ear pinning surgery), the surgeon will make incisions behind the ears to reposition them closer to the head, creating a more natural-looking fold. This procedure is an effective way to correct prominent ears and provides long-lasting results. By enhancing the balance of your facial features, a prominent ear correction can enhance your self-esteem and overall confidence.

After the procedure

After the procedure, your surgeon will carefully bandage your ears to protect them. After removing the bandages, you'll see a noticeable improvement in your ears' appearance. Additionally, the surgical scars should be well-concealed.

Ear reshaping provides lasting results. If you're looking for further refinement, additional procedures can help meet your specific goals.

Your St. Luke’s plastic surgeon will customize your procedure based on your desired treatment results. As you progress through the recovery process, there are several key milestones to anticipate. These include the following:

  • Day of surgery: You'll experience localized pain and swelling around your ears following the procedure. To protect your ears and maintain their positioning during early recovery, wearing compression garments is recommended.
  • 1 to 7 days after surgery: Your pain and swelling should start to decrease, but it’s important to keep wearing the recovery headband.
  • 1 to 2 weeks after surgery: If your job isn't too strenuous, you may return to school or work after getting your surgeon's approval.
  • 3 months after surgery: Your swelling should be completely gone and you won’t need to wear the recovery headband. However, it’s important to follow your surgeon’s recommendations.
  • 1 year after surgery: Your ears should be completely healed.

During the initial recovery, avoid sleeping on your side or applying pressure to the incisions. It's important to follow your surgeon's instructions for post-operative care and attend any follow-up appointments as scheduled to ensure the best healing.