Human body has many small and big deformities that are correctable. With the innovations in science and technology, nothing seems difficult or impossible.One such abnormality found in human body is Otapostasis, commonly known as Bat Ear or Prominent Ear. Otoplasty Surgery For Prominent Ear can be conducted on patients above 8 years of age.
Let us find out in details about the condition, causes and treatment.
What Is Otapostasis?
Otapostasis refers to a body abnormality related to human ears in which the ears areprotruding abnormally.The scientific reasoning to this is that the Concha portion of the ear which is the depression in the external ear leading to its central opening, is fairly large. The Antihelix (curved prominence of cartilage parallel to it which runs in front of the helix on the Pinna), is poorly developed. The Scapha, which is the curved depression separating the Helix and Antihelix of the ear, is also underdeveloped.
How prevalent is it? What are the causes?
While this is a rare condition, 1 to 2 persons out of every hundred are suffering from prominent ear. The main cause behind this condition is unknown but could be due to inheritance. It could be unilateral or bilateral (affecting one ear or both). This type of abnormality is a result of inadequate development of ear cartilage in early stages of organ development. People suffering from this condition are usually born with normal ears, but within 3 months after birth and in organ growth and development phase, the condition becomes visible. This becomes even severe if as a baby, while breastfeed, the cartilage is continuously pressed against the mother and bent in the process.
In medical language the causes can be laid down as:
- Underdevelopment of the Antihelix
- Overdevelopment (large in size) of the deep Concha
- A combination of both the above
Does it affect the functionality of the ear?
No, prominent ear does not pose any challenge to the function that an ear is supposed to perform. Yet, it may affect the patient (a child) psychologically and pose self-esteem issues. This may affect the overall performance of child in growing years.
What is the available treatment for Prominent Ear?
There is a surgery carried out to treat Prominent Ear or Otapostasis, and is known as Otoplasty Surgery. Under this surgery, the protruding part of the ear is treated and set closer to the head. Basically, the large size of ear is reduced surgically and the ear is placed correctly to look normal.
Here is some basic information about Otoplasty Surgery:
- It can be conducted on patients above 8 years of age. Children and adults, both can benefit from the surgery.
- The underdeveloped Antihelix of the ear is corrected or reconstructed from the root, if it is completely missing.
- In some patients, the problem is much lesser, as the Antihelix is there but less prominent in the middle.
- Suturing (stitching back) method is used to reconstruct the Antihelix.
- Patient must be administered with general or local anesthesia, depending upon the age.
- An incision is made behind the patient’s ear, inside the skin fold, exactly at the point where ear joins with the head.
- Extra portion which makes the ear large is removed surgically.
- Concha is then stitched with the bone behind the ear, which is called mastoid. This procedure is called Concha Mastoid Sutures. This helps the ear to stick towards the inside and not appear protruding.
The structural formation of Prominent Ear varies from patient to patient. In some it maybe the Concha that is enlarged and needs to be resized, while in others the angle of the fold in ear cartilage is such that it causes the ear to protrude, and needs to be corrected. Unusually large earlobe is also one reason that causes Prominent Ear or Otapostasis.
Today, science has come a long way and is proving to be helpful in correcting any human deformities. Dr Rajat Gupta at RG Aesthetics is a board certified plastic surgeon and specializes in Ear Reconstruction Surgery. Dr Rajat Gupta is one of the very few doctors to be a member of International Society of Auricular Reconstruction (ISAR). To book an appointment with Dr Gupta, contact: 9251711711.