Otoplasty (Ear Surgery)

Otoplasty (ear surgery) is one of the few plastic surgery procedures commonly performed on children. Excessively large or protruding ears can be a source of significant embarrassment, teasing and bullying for youngsters, which is why parents often opt to have surgery for these concerns performed before the child begins school. Adults may also choose to undergo otoplasty for cosmetic reasons or to correct an injury or birth defect. Dr. Kovanda offers a variety of otoplasty techniques to his Minneapolis patients, so he can customize treatment to the specific needs and desired outcome of the individual.

Before & After Otoplasty

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Reasons for Otoplasty (Ear Pinning)

There are a variety of reasons why someone might choose to have an otoplasty procedure. The size of the ears, whether they are exceptionally small or large, can be one of those reasons. Individuals might also consider otoplasty for ears that protrude from the sides of the face, interfering with the overall facial profile. Patients with ears that are asymmetrical in size, shape or position may also be good candidates for otoplasty.

Beyond the cosmetic concerns, otoplasty can also be used to repair injured ears or correct a birth defect that has altered the shape or position of the ears. It is usually not recommended in children until the ears have fully developed, which typically occurs by the age of four or five. Otoplasty is also not effective in addressing hearing loss.

About Otoplasty

Otoplasty is performed by Dr. Kovanda on an outpatient basis. Incisions are generally placed behind the ear, where visible scarring will not be a concern. Through the incisions, Dr, Kovanda is able to remove excess tissue and skin, while suturing the ears to a more attractive position. If different concerns are to be addressed, Dr. Kovanda can usually place incisions in inconspicuous locations, such as within the inner folds of the ear.


Our Minneapolis patients are often pleasantly surprised at how easy recovery from otoplasty can be. Discomfort after the procedure is usually minimal and can be effectively managed with oral medication. Special dressings or a headband are often worn for a few days after the procedure to hold ears in their new position during the healing process. Most patients are back to regular activities within 1-2 weeks after surgery.

Ear Pinning with Dr. Kovanda

Otoplasty is an effective way to permanently alter the size, shape or position of the ears in patients of all ages. Dr. Kovanda routinely performs a variety of otoplasty procedures at his Twin Cities office and strives to ensure results are both natural and aesthetically pleasing for all of his patients. To learn more about this procedure, please contact a member of our team today. We look forward to speaking with you and answering all of your questions about your options in otoplasty.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I drive after ear surgery?

After ear surgery you should not drive a car for about one week.

Does otoplasty affect hearing?

No, this procedure cannot change your hearing.

Does otoplasty last forever?

In most cases otoplasty results are permanent.

How dangerous is ear surgery?

As with any surgical procedure, ear surgery does have some risks including bleeding, infection, poor wound healing, anesthesia risks, and more. However, when this surgery is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Kovanda, these risks are rare.

How long does dizziness last after ear surgery?

After ear surgery, some people may experience dizziness which should disappear after about 10 days.

How long does ear tube surgery last?

This procedure takes about 15 minutes to complete.

How long does it take to recover from an ear surgery?

Following ear surgery, most people can return to their regular activities after 1-2 weeks.

How long does it take to recover from ear surgery?

Ear surgery recovery takes about 1-2 weeks.

Is otoplasty a safe procedure?

Otoplasty is often a safe and successful surgery. When performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Kovanda, risks and complications are low.

Is otoplasty permanent?

Yes, in most cases otoplasty results are permanent.

What is ear surgery called?

Ear surgery is also called otoplasty.

What kind of doctor does ear surgery?

Cosmetic ear surgery can be performed by a plastic or cosmetic surgeon.

Will my insurance cover otoplasty?

Because otoplasty is often an elective, cosmetic surgery, it is not typically covered by insurance.

Will ears relax after otoplasty?

As your ears heal following otoplasty they may slightly change position as they settle into their healed state.

Why do my ears stick out?

Protruding ears are often caused by an underdeveloped antihelical fold.

Why would you need ear surgery?

Otoplasty can change the size, shape, and position of the ears. If you are bothered by your ears, this procedure may be a good choice.

What should I do after ear surgery?

Following ear surgery, your doctor will have you wear a loose headband that covers and protects your ears at night for a couple of weeks.

How much does ear surgery cost?

In general, otoplasty costs around $3,156. However, this price can vary depending on your location.

How long should I wear headband after otoplasty?

You will need to wear a headband for 6-8 weeks after surgery when sleeping and during exercise and sports.

How long is otoplasty surgery?

This surgery usually takes about two hours to complete.

How long is ear surgery?

Ear surgery typically takes 2 hours.

How is ear surgery done?

Most people should wait about three weeks to return to full exercise.

How do you sleep after ear surgery?

After otoplasty surgery, you will need to sleep with your head elevated on pillows for at least one week.

How ear surgery is done?

Otoplasty involves placing incisions behind the ear. Excess skin and tissue is then removed and the ears and sutures into a more attractive position.

Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon at Kovanda Plastic Surgery | Website

Dr. Christopher Kovanda is a plastic surgeon with over 20 years of experience. He is a member of several medical professional societies including the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, the American College of Surgeons, and the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. He has been honored with several awards including “Most Compassionate Doctor” on Vitals.com and has earned “Top Doctor” status on Realself.com. Finally, Dr. Kovanda is a Board-Certified plastic surgeon by the American Board of Surgery-General and the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

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