Will Ears Grow in Size After Otoplasty?

hi i am getting ready to get married in september of 2011, i have always been self concious of my protruding ears, i recently went to have a consultation on otoplasty with a local surgeon he took 3 minutes to talk to me and did not answer the questions i had, he especially made me more nervous by tellimg me i cannot have it done now to wait untill august to get the look i want for the wedding because 6 months later my ears would look the same! i am going to waste $6000 for 5 months of happines?

Doctor Answers 23

Ear growth after otoplasty

Rubi, I'm sorry that you didn't have a better experience.  A well-performed otoplasty should yield a life-long improvement.  As far as ear growth is concerned there are numerous studies looking at peoples' ears as they age.  The evidence clearly indicates that ears to continue to grow even after body growth stops with men more affected than women.  What I can't answer is whether this normal age-related growth is interrupted after otoplasty.  For many years it has been a concern that growth of the nasal septum would stop if it were operated on in children causing a smaller nose in adulthood.  However more recent studies seem to indicate that nasal growth is not affected in carefully performed septal surgery in childhood.  I know that the ear is not the nose but if the same holds true then otoplasty should not retard ear growth with aging.  Maybe there is an idea for a research study!

Fort Collins Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Results are permanent

A good otoplasty should give you permanent results. You have time to do it before your wedding. I think you need  a consult with another plastic surgeon  and take it fro there.

Moneer Jaibaji, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Your otoplasty results should be permanent by the right surgeon

I am sorry to hear of your experience with the other doctor.  It sounds very much as if this surgeon does not perform many otoplasties if his experience is that they disappear so quickly.  In my experience, my results are permanent.  In less than 10% of cases I need to go back after a year and do a small degree of tightening but I have not seen an ear go back to where it started.  With the right surgical technique that should not happen.  Always review a surgeon's results in addition to his credentials.


Dr. Sam Lam
Dallas, TX

Sam Lam, MD, FACS
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Otoplasty is a permanent procedure

Otoplasty is performed to change the shape and appearance of the ears.  Otoplasty is a permanent procedure. The underlying cartilage of the ear is what gives the ear its shape and appearance. In an otoplasty surgery, the cartilage is sculpted to change the shape of the ear.  Occasionally, skin and cartilage are removed as well.  This will depend upon the shape of your ear and the necessary correction.  I always aim to achieve a natural look and modify a procedure based on this.  You should seek a surgeon that you feel comfortable with for the procedure prior to proceeding.

Jacob D. Steiger, MD
Boca Raton Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Otoplasty to Correct Protruding Ears

Otoplasty is a permanent procedure utilized to correct protruding ears in both children and adults.  Otoplasty (Ear Pinning) is designed to correct protruding or disfigured ears in children and adults. The shape, position or proportion of the ear may be corrected. The goal is creation of a natural shape and position, improving the balance and proportion between the ears and face.  Full development of the ear is complete after age four.  Therefore, otoplasty can safely be performed on children at anytime after this age.  The ear reaches full development by four years, and will not change significantly in size or shape after this age.  When performed by a skilled surgery, otoplasty will provide lasting results, not a transient "fix".  Good Luck.... Dr. Corrado

Anthony Corrado, DO
Philadelphia Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Otoplasty and size changes.

In 35 years of doing otoplasties, I have never seen ears "grow".  I do children at 5-6 years of age and the ears do not grow. If the surgery is done properly the results last forever, not 6 months. Get another opinion from an experienced plastic surgeon.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Otoplasty results: are they permanent and do the ears keep growing?

Otoplasty is a safe and relatively simple procedure that should correct protruding ears and give you a permanent and natural result.  Otoplasty is performed on patients as early as 6 years of age.  That is because the ear has reached most of its adult size by this age and surgery at this age and beyond will not impair ear shape or size.  While otoplasty is a permanent procedure and should not result in a return of the ears to a preoperative appearance they do occasionally have to be revised but this is not routine or common.  Any surgery that you are contemplating before a wedding should be done well in advance to allow time for complete healing and to allow for any unexpected complications to resolve as well (such as prolonged swelling, etc).  It is not a good idea to have surgical prodedures that close to your wedding.

Gregory Branham, MD
Saint Louis Facial Plastic Surgeon

The Ear Shape After Otoplasty Is Both Stable And Permanent

The ear position after otoplasty, if good surgical techniques are used, is both stable and permanent. The ear position is reshaped by cartilage folding and permanent sutures from an incision on the back of youy ear. While they may initially look a little too far back, they will relax slightly in a few weeks after surgery to a more natural shape and position. But relapsing back to where they were before the surgery is unheard of in my experience. Otoplasty is a relatively simple surgery that has a profound and immediate effect. I would recommend doing the procedure as far removed from your wedding as possible to enjoy the benefits and allow you to be less self-conscious and focus on this next most important step in your life.

Barry L. Eppley, MD, DMD
Indianapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

After Otoplasty Surgery, it's typical for your ears to protrude slightly (3-4 mm) over the first year following your surgery.

I read your concern. It sounds like you may want to consider consulting several certified, reputable facial plastic surgeons to discuss your proposed Otoplasty Surgery. Just about everyone's ears relax slightly over the first year following your surgery. This is not typically a problem from an aesthetic standpoint after well-performed Otoplasty Surgery. Your results will be permanent.

You could have your surgery anytime from now till June. You should have the surgery at least 6 weeks before your big day to allow your post-surgical swelling to resolve.

All the best from NJ:

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 418 reviews

The Truth About Ear Growth & Change Following Otoplasty

It’s important to understand that ears change throughout a patient’s lifetime.  It’s also important to realize that changes associated with setback otoplasty are designed to last an entire lifetime.  Although minor ear changes occur with aging, these changes would have no impact on the results of your otoplasty.

It’s unfortunate that you’ve had a bad experience with your plastic surgeon.  Under these circumstances, it might be appropriate to seek a second opinion from a plastic surgeon with better communication skills.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 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.