Ear pinning (otoplasty) is performed either as an outpatient service under local anaesthesia or under general anaesthesia followed by preventive hospitalisation for 1 night. The surgery takes roughly 1 hour. The surgeon removes a strip of skin from the back of the pinna, adjusts the ear cartilage as necessary and fixes the ear in the desired position using absorbable sutures. After the surgery, clients leave with a fixation bandage around their head.
After recovery from anaesthesia, the client takes analgesics to dull pain, which usually recedes in a few days. The fixation bandage is usually worn for 1 to 2 weeks; clients regularly come for redressing until fully recovered.
The healing process and stabilisation of the earlobe in the desired position usually take 2 months. During this time, there is a risk or reprotrusion, or the return of the earlobe to its original position. For this reason, it is very important to avoid activities that could lead to injury of the not quite healed ear. It is also advisable to protect the ears from extreme cold or sunlight. The fine scar remaining behind the ear after surgery will fade over time.