Microtia, sometimes referred to as aural atresia or ear atrestia, is an ear deformity in which one or both of the ears are underdeveloped or have formed improperly. Many times this results in conductive hearing loss for the affected patient. Fortunately, Dr. Rednam has a lot of experience in ear reconstruction and has helped many patients gain their hearing back, along with their confidence.
Children aged 5-7 are the best candidates for ear reconstruction. The procedure typically takes about five hours, and is performed under general anesthesia or IV sedation. Dr. Rednam performs the procedure in two or sometimes three steps to ensure the aesthetic and long-term success of the procedure.
She also typically prefers rib cartilage grafts to treat microtia. This allows for the lowest risk of complication and offers patients a lifetime of natural looking results.
During the surgery, Dr. Rednam removes natural, living cartilage from the patient’s rib. Once cartilage is extracted, Dr. Rednam shapes and molds it to look like the patient’s ear, using (if possible) the patient’s other properly-formed ear as a guide. Then, she places sculpted cartilage beneath the skin where the ear should be. This process allows the skin to take the shape of the cartilage in order to form a natural ear shape.
After about four months, Dr. Rednam will perform another procedure. The four months recovery time allows for enough healing so the reconstructed ear can withstand a second surgery. Immediately after the first surgery, the reconstructed ear is flush against the side of the patient’s head. The purpose of the second surgery is for Dr. Rednam to give the ear the proper projection away from the head. To do this, she places a block of cartilage in a pocket beneath the skin, to push the ear away from the side of the face.
In some cases, patients who wish to wear earrings require a third surgery. Most of the time Dr. Rednam can perform this part of the reconstruction in office with local anesthesia only.
Because ear reconstruction uses a patient’s own skin and ear cartilage, there is no risk of rejection. Most patients recover in three days or less, with minimal pain and scarring.
Schedule a Consultation
Rib graft microtia reconstruction is a safe and effective procedure that offers patients lifelong results. To book a consultation with Dr. Rednam, email her patient coordinator, Stephanie, at email@example.com or call (713) 791-0700.