Will People Notice Otoplasty? (photo)

I'm planning to have done a small correction in my ears. One of them protude a little bit more than the other. I basically want my both ears just few millimeters closer to the head and more symmetrical. Not a huge change as I don't want them too close to the head. I'm just wondering if people I know will notice I had a surgery once I'm recovered. And do you recommend a  hair style change in order to divert their attention from ears? Thanks in advance and excuse me for my poor english.

Doctor Answers 12


People may or may not notice the change depending on how ell they know you.  That however should not be important since you are doing this surgery for yourself. 

Noticeable or Subtle Results Following Otoplasty

In many cases, the results of otoplasty may be subtle and not very noticeable.  In other cases, where major changes in the ear are necessary, changes may not be easily hidden. Under these circumstances, efforts to disguise changes may be necessary.

This is most easily accomplished with hair growth, and in some cases eye wear.  When your appearance changes people will commonly point to the most noticeable finding.  It’s not unusual to hear people say, those glasses really make you look different.

Scars are well hidden behind the ear following this procedure and tend to heal nicely.  It would be unusual for scars in this location to draw attention to your otoplasty.

In your case, the minimal changes that you’re hoping for probably won’t be noticed by the average person.  Even subtle changes will be noticed by the people who are the closest to you.  In other words, it’s pretty hard to fool your mom or wife.

Will ear pinning (otoplasty) be noticeable

An ear pinning surgery (otoplasty) will generally conceal the incision behind the ear. These scars may remain red or raised for 3 months and therefore wearing your hair to conceal the backside of the ear will make the incision nearly invisible. Typically after 3 months the ear incisions are softe supple and look like an ear crease.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Otoplasty results should look natural


Most people will not notice that you have had your ears pinned back as long as they have been done correctly and look natural.  They will be initially tucked back and overcorrected slightly for the first few weeks and then they will tend to drift outward to their new position.  In our experience, most patients who undergo an otoplasty report very few people ever have detected that they have had their ears done.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Know one will know you had it done but you...

A well performed otoplasty places the incisions behind the ear where they fall in the skin crease. Gentle re-shaping of the cartilage with sutures brings the ears closer to your head. A properly done otoplasty should be un-detectable and you won't need to change your hairstyle to hide it. Good luck!

Ivan Wayne, MD
Oklahoma City Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Well performed Otoplasty Surgery should yield natural, unoperated results.

From your photos, you seem to be an excellent candidate for Otoplasty Surgery. Your ears can be set back closer to your head with a combination of Mustarde and "conchal-set-back" sutures.

You should check that your surgeon has expertise with this procedure, and you should view many photos.

Complications of Otoplasty Surgery include keloid scarring or suture extrusion.

Dos vidanya.

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 336 reviews

Otoplasty or ear pinning should not leave visible scars

Otoplasty incisions are placed strategically so that they are not visible. Old style procedures involved folding the ears so that a crease in the cartilage was sometimes visible and a dead give away to the surgery. As plastic surgery has developed, newer techniques avoid this hallmark of surgery and give a much more natural result.

Elizabeth Slass Lee, MD
Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Otoplasty Results

Anytime you have plastic surgery, the goal is to have a positive effect without having the look of having had plastic surgery. With otoplasty, the goal would be to place the ears in a natural position. For people that know you will projecting ears, they most likely will notice that your ears to not project anymore after surgery. However, like you suggest, you can change something else about yourself to distraction attention away from the otoplasty - change the color of your hair or hairstyle, wear glasses if you normally do not wear glasses, etc. Good luck with your surgery.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Otoplasty results

I think that people will notice an otoplasty procedure on you. Obviously, the procedure needs to be done well, since in any surgical treatment, the results are operator dependent. There are techniques that allow the surgeon to adjust the degree of the ear push back during the course of the procedure. Computer imaging may help the surgeon achieve results that are very close to your expectations. Additionally, if the procedure is done under local anesthesia, you can participate in judging the results and adjustments can be made before the incisions are closed.

Maurice M. Khosh, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Otoplasty to Pinback Ears

The purpose of otoplasty is to set back ears that protrude excessively from the side of the head. This will be noticeable to people who pay close attention and know that your ears protrude excessively. As with any good cosmetic surgery, a natural result will not draw attention to the ear, but away from it.

See the links below for an otoplasty video journey of one of my patients. You will see her only days after surgery and notice how it looks natural. If you did not know her before, you would never know she had surgery.

Jacob D. Steiger, MD
Boca Raton Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.