I Want To Make My Ears Smaller, Not Change Their Projection

All my life I have been insecure about my ears and avoided sports and other activities where you can't keep your hair down. When I look at Before And After photos of ear sugery I can only find pictures of prominent ears that have been fixed. I want to reduce the size of my ears, not change their position - is that possible? I have included a picture of my ear and some ear types I like. Would it be possible to make mines a little similar to those or is the structure too different?

Doctor Answers 6

Reducing size of ears

Hi! Your question is a good one. From the picture you have sent, I can see your ear from the side and it actually appears quite proportional to the rest of your face. To reduce the size of ears requires a scar on the outside surface which may be visible and can even have a notch or ridge. You're right, the most common operation is called an otoplasty which reduces the projection of the ears from the side of the head. My advice is not to seek surgery on your ears; they really look very proportional and natural. Surgery in this setting certainly has a chance to create a deformity that was not there preoperatively. Good luck!

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Ear Reduction Surgery

It’s virtually impossible to make a recommendation without frontal pictures and a physical examination.  Your lateral pictures suggest a relatively normal ear with the exception of poor development of the superior inner ear fold.

This deformity is relatively minor and as a result, your ear would be considered normal by most people.  With this in mind you should consider the risk benefit ratio before considering the otoplasty.  Consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon might be helpful as well.

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

Yes it is possible to make your ears smaller but not many surgeons perform this procedure.

The anatomic part of your ear that is larger compared to the average is ear is called the scapha.  It is possible to reduce the size of the scapha.  However, the scar for this surgery has to be placed on the front surface of the ear,  just under the shadow of the helical rim.  The scar usually heals very well but will be initially red and noticeable.

Leila Kasrai, MD, FRCSC
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Making ears smaller without changing projection

It is not possible to reduce the size of the ears.  This is only done under reconstructive considerations when skin caner is present on the ear.  Large aggressive cuts are made in the ear to reduce the size and shape.  The resulting scars are cosmetically unacceptable to patients. 

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Large ears

Your ears look quite normal to me and I think,you are unnecessarily self-conscious about their appearance. The size of your ear can be reduced and the standard way of doing this is to cut out a pie-shaped wedge from the margin of your ear. Unfortunately this will leave a scar and sometimes a wedge excision can also create a cup-like distortion of the ear. I would leave your ears alone, you are looking for trouble.

Ronald J. Edelson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Ear reduction surgery

I think based on your description of the effect your ear  size has had on your activities (for  a prolonged period of time) and the pictures you  have sent, that you are an excellent candidate for reduction  of the size of your ears. This procedure will involve careful planning and technique to minimize the appearance of the scar and to achieve  as much symmetry as possible.

The trade-off for the reduced ear  length  will be a scar which usually heals as a fine line. In your case, I would suggest planning the procedure such that the resulting scar may be hidden by  earlobe  jewelry.

Best wishes.


Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 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.