Besides protruding ears, there are a variety of other ear problems that can be helped with surgery.

These include:

  • Lop ear, when the top seems to fold down and forward
  • Cupped ear, which is usually a very small ear
  • Shell ear, when the curve in the outer rim
  • As well as the usual ears that poke out beyond what is considered normal, which is where the natural folds and creases of the cartilage are missing.


Ear surgery can also improve :

  • Large earlobes
  • Stretched earlobes from heavy earrings or ear stretchers
  • Lobes with large creases and wrinkles
  • Cleft earlobes which are usually due to earrings pulling out
  • Surgeons can even build new ears for those who were born without them or who have lost them through injury.

Surgery On Children
Parents should be alert to their child’s feelings about protruding ears.

If it is not bothering the child, then it is probably not necessary. Children who feel uncomfortable about their ears and want the surgery are generally more cooperative during the process and happier with the outcome.

Ear surgery is only performed on children over four years of age as ears are almost fully grown by then.

Typically, surgery is performed:
Before children start school
Between primary school and high school
When they leave school.

It is not uncommon for adults to want ear surgery and there are generally no additional risks associated with ear surgery on an older patient. The oldest client Dr. McGovern has performed Otoplasty on is a 70-year-old male. As long as you are fit and healthy, you are never too old!

For an idea of the types of results that can be achieved, take a look at Dr. McGovern’s before and after photos on our Gallery page.

Our experienced staff is happy to answer any questions you may have about Otoplasty or ear surgery.

surgeryEar surgery is usually performed as a day procedure in a hospital or day surgery centre or in the operating theatre at our rooms.

If your child is young your surgeon will recommend general anaesthesia, so the child will sleep through the operation. For older children or adults , your surgeon will usually prefer to use local anaesthesia, combined with a sedative, so you or your child will be awake but relaxed and pain free.

Ear surgery usually takes about one to two hours. An incision is made in the crease behind each ear. Through this approach, the cartilage is scored in such a way as to bend it permanently backward towards the head.

In most cases, ear surgery will leave a faint scar in the back of the ear that will fade with time. Even when only one ear appears to protrude, surgery is usually performed on both ears for a better balance.

recoveryAdults and children are usually up and around within a few hours of surgery. The patient’s head will be wrapped in a bulky bandage immediately following surgery to promote the best shape and healing. The ears may throb or ache a little for a few days, but this can be relieved by medication.

Within a week, the bulky bandages will be removed. A headband or beanie worn at night will help you or your child sleep undisturbed, even if you roll onto one ear. Be sure to follow your surgeon’s directions for wearing this headband at night.

Stitches are usually removed in 10 days or so. Any activity in which the ear might be bent should be avoided for a month or so. Most adults can go back to work about five days after surgery. Children can go back to school once the dressings are removed, if they’re careful about playground activity. Children’s surgery is usually scheduled for the school holidays.

Most patients, young and old alike, are thrilled with the results of ear surgery. But keep in mind, the goal is improvement, not perfection. Don’t expect both ears to match perfectly – perfect symmetry is both unlikely and unnatural in ears. If you’ve discussed the procedure and your expectations with your surgeon before the operation, chances are, you’ll be very pleased with the result.

If you have further questions, write them down and ask your surgeon and his friendly staff at your consultation.