In adults, the surgery can be performed under local or general anesthesia. We recommend children be asleep for the surgery, as it lasts one to two hours. The surgery is performed through an incision in the skin crease behind the ear so there is no visible scar.
After the surgery, a large protective dressing is applied for three days. Afterwards, a headband is worn by children day and night for two weeks, followed by headband use at night only for an additional four weeks. The headband helps to protect the ears from abrupt changes in position during the critical early healing period. Adults may choose to wear the headband at night only from the start. Full activity can be resumed in two weeks, and contact sports are safe after six weeks. At first, the ears feel numb and look flat against the side of the head. Mild bruising is usual, but this subsides within two weeks. As with other plastic surgery of the face, there is a remarkable absence of pain. Everything feels back to normal within four to six weeks