Otoplasty Recovery Time

What was your recovery time after an otoplasty? How long did it take to heal from the ear surgery? 

Doctor Answers 33

Otoplasty Recovery

There are various phases during the recovery process of a well executed otoplasty performed by a surgeon with expertise in ear reshaping:

  • First 24 hours- Patient wears a mild compressive garment on the head.  Patient ear appear larger and more swollen than ideal
  • 24 to 72 hours- Patient wears headband over ears as much as possible.  Majority of swelling begins to dissipate
  • 72 hours to First Week- Some patients will be able to return to work depending on their hairstyle and comfort with swelling in ear and duties at work
  • First Week to Second Week- Most patients feel comfortable in social situations with ears
  • Three Months-Swelling Completely subsided

Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Ear Reshaping (Otoplasty) Recovery Time and Care

Otoplasty or ear reshaping is one of the most rewarding plastic surgery procedure for both the patient and the surgeon.

Below is my protocol that I have found to lead to good and predictable results:

  • Typically we place a compressive bandage on the ear for 24 hours and patients are encouraged to wear a light head band (like ski band around their ears for one to two weeks.
  • Typically the sutures are resorbable and do not need to be removed.
  • Usually patient can do their activity of daily living. No heavy activities for few weeks.
  • Patients can go back to work in a few days.
  • Generally satisfactory healing and assessment of results at 3 months.
  • The results are very obvious quickly after surgery once the dressing is removed.
  • Revisions are possible but rare.

Hope this is helpful.

Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 188 reviews

Otoplasty Recovery Time

Most patients take one week to recovery from otoplasty surgery. However, any excessive exercise or movement should be avoided for a couple of weeks after surgery to ensure optimal healing. Your surgeon should inform you on any information regarding recovery time. All the best, Dr. Berman MD, FACS

Jonathan Berman, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Otoplasty Montreal Recovery Time

Thank you for your question

At my practice I offer 3 types of anesthesia:
  • Pure local anesthesia, for which an analgesic product is locally injected to ensure the insensitivity of the ears.
  • Local anesthetic by tranquilizers administered intravenously.
  • Classis general anesthesia during which the patient is completely asleep.

The choice between these different techniques will be the result of a discussion between you, the anesthesiologist and myself. Surgery is usually done on an outpatient basis. Your recovery will vary according to what anaesthesia you chose.

Pain is very mild. The dressing will be removed at the end of the first week. The ears will appear swollen and bruised. A hand band will then be worn for two additional weeks. Showering is allowed at the end of the first week. Contact sports must be avoided. Cold hypersensitivity is common for a few months.

A few months of healing are necessary before results are stable. Scars will remain pink for about six months. The new shape of the ear is usually permanent but slight recurrence of the deformity is possible.

Hope this helped. Best of luck,

Recovery from otoplasty

Recovery from otoplasty surgery generally takes about one week, during which time any pain and swelling will subside. Restriction from strenuous activities or contact sports is advised for several weeks. Most of the  healing from the surgery occurs after 3 months, with some healing continuing for one year after the procedure.

Vito C. Quatela, MD
Rochester Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Recovery Time After Otoplasty

For the first 24 hours you will need to a wear a compression garment on the ear. Most patients take 3-5 days off from work. The ear garment is protective and should be worn for 2-3 weeks at night following surgery. After about 3 months everything should be largely healed and you will see your final results.

Otoplasty Recovery

Otoplasty or ear pinning is most typically done on children over the age of 6, but can be done on adults as well.  The procedure takes only about 45 minutes per side, and can be done in the office under local anesthesia in adults and in the operating room under sedation for children.  

The results are quite life-changing for most patients.  Post-operatively, here's what to expect:

  • Typically a compressive bandage is placed at the completion of the surgery
  • Then, a looser dressing is placed for another week.
  • A headband is worn at night while sleeping for the next 4-6 weeks.
  • light head band (like ski band around their ears for one to two weeks.
  • No lifting or carrying anything more than 10 pounds for 2 weeks.
  • No strenuous activity for 2 weeks.
  • The ear must stay dry for one week.
  • Results are very obvious once the dressing is removed, but some swelling can last for 6 weeks or more.
All the best,
Dr. Michelle Yagoda

Michelle R. Yagoda, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Otoplasty Recovery

The recovery from otoplasty surgery can vary from person to person, however the general guidelines in our otoplasty practice are as follows:
The surgery is usually performed under local anesthesia, some patients and very young patients opt for a sedation anesthesia.  The stitches will be behind the ear and a bandage will be worn around the ears for the first day.  The next day, the bandage will be changed to a looser one. We recommend that you bring a soft cotton hair band to use for this purpose.  I allow my patients to take the head band off 48 hours after surgery for showering.  The band should be worn all of the time except for some breaks for the first 7-14 days after surgery.  After that time frame I recommend that the head band be worn to protect the ears at night (while sleeping) and whenever performing any strenuous activity.  This is to protect the ears.

Generally speaking, pain is usually experienced the first night after surgery and a medication is given to help alleviate this. After the first night, my patients rarely need any additional pain medication.

Many people go back to work fairly quickly. Especially if they can wear their head bands to work.

Jacob D. Steiger, MD
Boca Raton Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Recovery time after otoplasty

Thank you for your question.

I perform otoplasty under general anaesthesia and patients go home the same day.  I  use all dissolving sutures. I put local local anaesthetic in and around the ears so that everything will be completely numb for many hours afterwards. I wrap both ears up in a bulky bandage and you take it easy for the next week. Obviously you would not be able to wash your hair during that time. One week following the surgery, the bandages are removed. After that, I just have you wear a sweatband type headband at night for the next few weeks. No swimming or sport for 2 or 3 weeks.

I hope this helps. 

Otoplasty healing

I have my patients wear a compressive gauze wrap for the first 48 hrs.  This is removed in the office.  Then the patient wears a head band 24/7 (only removing it to shower) for the next week.  Sutures are then removed.  At that point, the patient wears the same head band at night for the next 2 weeks.
I ask that they take 3-5 days off from work, and no strenuous activity for 7 days after surgery.

Clyde Mathison, MD
Knoxville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 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.