Microtia is a birth defect and in this, the deformity is seen in the external ear. Sometimes, it includes the inner ear and the middle ear too. In several cases, hearing loss is caused due to this condition. If you have a doubt whether this condition has affected your child, consult a surgeon who has special expertise in microtia ear surgery. The procedure is a technically difficult one and so, staying well-informed is extremely necessary.
What to Expect from Ear Reconstruction Surgery
Surgery for microtia is a very challenging one and for this the rib cartilage is harvested. It is used to craft an earlobe that will replace the missing or deformed one.
Usually microtia surgery is performed when the child is 7 years of age. First, a CT scan would be performed for understanding the condition, following which the surgeon would advise surgery. Ear reconstruction is usually achieved via two or three procedures. In the first procedure, a new ear is created in the correct position. The second procedure raises that ear off the side of the head. For the first procedure, rib cartilage is harvested and molded into the shape of an ear. The cartilage graft is placed underneath the skin where the ear should be. The skin assumes the shape of the cartilage to form a natural shape. The surgery requires around five hours and recovery period is around three days. Once the ear is fully formed, the second procedure is carried out. This will be approximately 4 months after the first procedure. The ear that lies flat against the head is raised to a natural position with the help of a skin graft and a small block of cartilage that is placed in a pocket under the skin. A third procedure may be needed for piercing the ears for wearing earrings.
The Right Surgeon Should Be Chosen for Excellent Results
This delicate plastic surgery can be performed only by an expert plastic surgeon. If it is not handled properly, numerous issues can arise. These include infections, destruction of skin flap tissues, fluid formation, donor site problems, collection of blood outside blood vessels as well as other unaesthetic results. A thorough research should be done and a board certified plastic surgeon having sufficient experience should be consulted. Always ensure that the center is accredited by the AAAASF. Having realistic expectations about the results is also extremely important.