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Cosmetic Surgery for Ears

What to Expect and How to Prepare for Cosmetic Ear Surgery continued...

If you are an adult, your surgeon probably will use local anesthesia with a sedative. A child will likely receive general anesthesia (be put to sleep) to ensure that he or she cannot move around during the operation.

People getting general anesthesia cannot eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery or the morning of the surgery. The last meal the night before should be very light.

Most otoplasties are done in the surgeon's office or in an outpatient facility. On the day of the surgery, wear loose fitting, comfortable clothing. Avoid wearing a shirt with a collar. It's also a good idea to wear a shirt with buttons so that you do not have to pull it over your head.

If you are an adult, the surgery will be completed within a few hours and you can go home the same day. Plan for a friend to drive you home and stay with you the first night. Sometimes, in the case of a child, the doctor will prefer that the child stay in the hospital one night. If you are undergoing a more complex procedure as an adult, you also may need to stay in the hospital overnight.

Cosmetic Ear Surgery Recovery

You should plan to stay home at least one week after the surgery. Children should stay home from school for at least one week.

Your head will be bandaged before you are sent home. It's very important that you follow your doctor's instructions on how to handle the bandage to ensure a smooth recovery.

Your surgeon will tell you how long you will need to wear the bandage and how to manage it while you sleep. You likely will have to wear it for at least three days. When you have the bandage removed, your surgeon will provide you with a headband-type dressing. He or she may want you to wear this for up to three weeks to promote proper healing.

If you have stitches that need to be taken out, your surgeon will do this about one week after the surgery.

Expect scars, which will likely fade over time.

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