Ear Reduction/Re-shaping Surgery (Otoplasty) Instructions
These instructions were carefully written with you in mind. Take the time to read them thoroughly several times. We have found that faithful adherence to the guidelines will give you the smoothest recovery and optimum results. If a question does arise, first refer back to these pages. If you are still uncertain, call our office on 706-235-5570.
Before the Surgery:
If you develop a cold, fever or any other medical symptom, please call the office right away.
Be sure to have all medications and supplies purchased prior to surgery. These include antibiotic, antibiotic ointment (Polysporin), pain medication, and anti-nausea suppositories, hydrogen peroxide and Q-tips.
Do not take any aspirin or aspirin-containing drugs for 14 days before surgery. This is extremely important since the aspirin can thin the blood and cause you to bleed more. We have included a list of prescription and over the counter drugs that in clued aspirin. You can download and print the list here – please read it carefully.
Two days before surgery, you are to take a shower with Dial soap or another antibacterial soap at least once a day. Be careful to fully cleanse the area in front of and in back of your ear. This will help reduce risk of infection.
You should have received prescriptions for medications. If you have not, please call our office right away. Fill all the prescriptions at least 48 hours (2 days) prior to surgery. It is best to take your antibiotic with food or shortly after eating, to avoid stomach upset. It is a good idea to have Tylenol or another over the counter, non-aspirin medication for pain on hand at home.
In addition, you should purchase a headband that is snug, but not too firm or too tight. If the headband is too tight, it may damage the skin after surgery.
Please arrange to have someone drive you to and from surgery. You will not be allowed to drive yourself.
On the Day of Surgery:
- Do not eat or drink anything after midnight the evening before the surgery. This includes water or chewing gum.
- Do not use tobacco for 2 weeks before or 4 weeks after surgery.
- On the morning of surgery, please take a shower using DIAL or other antibacterial soap, making sure the ear area is scrubbed thoroughly. Do not use any body lotion on your face the day of surgery. Remove all makeup, nail polish and contact lenses at home before you come to your appointment.
- Please wear loose fitting clothes the day of surgery. A zip-up or button-up top is a must. No pantyhose should be worn.
You will have a head dressing on after surgery. It can be removed 48 hours after surgery. After the head dressing is removed, you have shower using a mild soap and water. Use fingertips only to gently wash the ears and hair. After your shower, place the headband gently over your ears. You must wear the headband continuously , expect during showers, for the next 14 days. It should then be worn while sleeping for another 10-12 weeks.
The ears will be swollen, discolored and misshaped immediately following surgery. This gradually resolves over the next 2-3 weeks. These sutures placed behind the ear will be removed on post-op day 10 to 14. You will not see your final result for up to two to three months postoperatively.
You will need to return for follow-up examination in one week.
If you have any questions or experience what you consider to be unusual symptoms, please contact the office on 706-235-5570.
1. Sleep in a semi-sitting position for three days following surgery. A recline is ideal to sleep in. If you do not have a recliner, simply sleep on two or thee pillows.
2. You will have a compression bandage over your ears. Do not for any reason loose or remove it. It will be removed 48 to 72 hours following surgery.
3. You may have pain for the first hours following surgery. If the pain is severe and one-sided, notify your physician immediately.
4. Swelling may cause distortion of the face early after surgery. This will gradually resolve.
5. You may shampoo your hair 5 days following surgery, making sure incisions are covered with a greasy antibiotic ointment. Be careful not to rub your scalp vigorously. After 2 weeks, discontinue the use of the ointment.
6. Protect your ears from trauma for 2 weeks. Use care in a combing or brushing your hair. After the bandages are removed, a “ski-type” headband will be worn for two weeks (14 days). Carefully place the headband over your ears, and wear 24 hours a day. The office will supply the headband. After one week, the headband should be worn around the house whenever possible and slept in for 10 to 12 weeks following surgery.
7. The evening following your surgery start your antibiotics and continue to take them until they are all gone.