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Health Issues

​Having prominent ears may negatively affect a child’s self-image because he looks different and may be teased by peers. This can lead to poor development of interpersonal relationships, social withdrawal, and even depression.

For minor degrees of deformity, no intervention may be needed.

Surgical Correction

For severe degrees of congenital deformity or birth defect, otoplasty (surgical correction) is warranted in children who are not at excessive risk of under anesthesia and surgery. If the auricle (outer projecting portion of the ear) is 85% of adult size by the time a child is 4 years old, otoplasty can be considered. The procedure is not very painful or risky and generally yields good results, although occasionally, revision surgery is needed.

Insurance Coverage for Otoplasty

Unfortunately, health insurance companies frequently consider otoplasty to be a cosmetic procedure and will not provide payment for the operation. Check your plan for specifics.

Additional Resources

 

Last Updated
10/7/2013
Source
Pediatric Otolaryngology (Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Pediatrics)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.