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Ear surgery, also known as otoplasty, is a cosmetic procedure performed to set prominent ears back closer to the head or to alter the shape or proportion of the ears. Ear surgery is able to correct congenital ear defects as well as ears misshapen as a result of trauma.

If protruding or misshapen ears cause you or your child to feel self-conscious, you may want to consider ear surgery with board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Dan Shell. Dr. Shell routinely performs ear surgery to correct deformities and to achieve a greater balance and proportion of the ears.


Ear surgery is a highly individualized surgical procedure that is specifically designed to treat one or more of the following conditions:

  • Overly large ears (macrotia)
  • Ears that protrude on one or both sides, not related to hearing loss
  • Revision ear surgery for adults dissatisfied with previous ear surgery

For the most part, this operation is performed on children between the ages of four to fourteen. The ears are almost fully grown by age four and the earlier the surgery, the less teasing and ridicule your child will have to endure. Ear surgery can also can also be performed on adults who are dissatisfied with the appearance of their ears. During a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Shell, he will be able to determine if ear surgery is the best option.


There are many factors to consider before committing to any cosmetic surgery. Below is a list of frequently asked questions regarding ear surgery:

  • How does ear surgery work?

    During your consultation with Dr. Shell, he will work with you to design a surgical technique based on the specific area of dissatisfaction. Ear surgery is typically performed in two to three hours; more complicated procedures will require additional time.

    One of the most common techniques involves making a small incision in the back of the ear to expose cartilage. Dr. Shell will then reshape the cartilage and bend it back towards the head.

    Permanent sutures will be placed to help maintain the new shape. Other techniques may involve the removal of skin, rather than cartilage, to reshape the ear.

  • What happens after ear surgery?

    Most patients are up and walking within a few hours of surgery. A bulky bandage will need to be placed around the head immediately after surgery to promote proper healing.

    It is common to experience throbbing or aching of the ears for a few days. Dr. Shell may prescribe a pain medication to alleviate discomfort. Most patients are able to return to work or school within a week. Strenuous activities, such as contact sports or anything that could potentially cause trauma to the ear, should be avoided for at least a month.

  • Are the results permanent?

    Ear surgery will provide a permanent improvement to the appearance of the ears. In most cases you will not require additional surgeries to maintain the results of your initial procedure. Ear surgery should only be considered if you wish to permanently alter the shape, placement or proportion of your (or your child’s) ears.

  • Why should I choose Dr. Shell for ear surgery?

    During your consultation, Dr. Shell will listen carefully to your concerns, ensuring that all treatments are customized to meet your goals. He uses the latest technology in a comfortable and confidential setting. Dr. Shell is certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery and The American Board of Surgery. He is also a member of The American Society of Plastic Surgeons and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons.


Are you considering ear surgery in Northern Mississippi for your child or yourself? Dr. Dan Shell is a board certified plastic surgeon who routinely performs ear surgery in Oxford, MS. To set up a consultation with Dr. Shell, please email us or call 662-236-6465.