Perceived imperfections in one’s appearance are causing more and more people to seek out surgical options. And the very organ they use to hear the news, the ear, is seeing an increase in plastic surgery treatments.
One’s own earlobes frame their face, making for perceptible nitpicking, and age causes them to swell in size and bend to gravity. Plastic surgeons have taken matters into their own hands with otoplasty, also known as an ear lift, for better proportion to the head.
On The Star Press’ website, cosmetic surgeon Dr. Steven Davis in Cherry Hill, N.J., talks about his experiences administering the procedure. He has helped hundreds of people tweak their ears in the last five years. Davis says that it is among the fastest-growing plastic surgery operations in that time.
With the procedure, the patient’s ear cartilage is altered to form new shapes, sizes and projections. A numbing substance is used on the ears to deaden the area to pain. The operation uses Restylane (a facial filler) to fatten-up and tighten earlobes. Approximately 60-90 minutes is needed for the operation. The surgery ranges between $500-600, and results last between one year and a permanent basis.
Recovery time ranges for patients of different ages: adults can return to normal routines within several days; children can resume activity after approximately one week. Results can be seen immediately, but it takes a few weeks before the person is fully healed. It is recommended that you wear a bandage for two days and a sweat band for two weeks.
Davis advises people to use stud or lighter earrings after the procedure to avoid additional lobe drooping. Scarring is seen as fine lines behind the ear.
The ear lift’s popularity may continue to increase as tattoo parlors have popularized ear gauging, a stretched piercing that fits plugs at least a half-inch in length. Those that no longer want the large holes in their earlobes might seek out the surgery to avoid losing professional opportunities. Davis says that he’s had several patients come in on employer’s demands to “get rid of those things.” Holes that large won’t heal themselves shut, he says, adding that “it needs to be restructured.”