Ear correction surgery

Ear correction surgery is cosmetic surgery to modify the shape or size of the ears or pin them back if they stick out.

Pinning back the ears is known as an otoplasty or pinnaplasty. It’s usually carried out on children and young teenagers, though adults may wish to have it done, too.

An otoplasty is not suitable for children younger than five as their ears will still be developing and growing.

How much does it cost?

In the UK, ear correction surgery costs about £2,500-£3,500, plus the cost of any consultations or follow-up care that may be needed.

It would only be approved out on the NHS under exceptional circumstances – for example, in rare cases where a person’s ears are causing them significant psychological suffering.

 What does it involve?

An otoplasty for an older child or adult can be done under local anesthetic by either a plastic surgeon or an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgeon.

It generally involves:
  • scoring and stitching the remaining structure into the desired shape and position
  • making one small cut (incision) behind the ear to expose the ear cartilage
  • removing small pieces of cartilage if necessary

Side effects to expect

After ear correction surgery, it is common to have:
  • slight bruising around the ears
  • a small scar behind each ear
  • numbness, soreness or tingling in the ears
  • These symptoms should fade over time.

What could go wrong

Ear correction surgery can occasionally result in:
  • inflammation of the ear cartilage
  • stiff ears  – it can take several months for them to become flexible again
  • a blood clot forming in the skin of the ear
  • the surgery not being successful and the ears starting to protrude again
Any type of operation also carries a small risk of:
  • the ears no longer being symmetrical
  • excessive bleeding
  • infection where the cut was made
  • an allergic reaction to the anesthetic

The surgeon should make clear how likely these risks and complications are and how they would be treated if they occurred.

 

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Mixed hearing loss

What is it?

Mixed hearing loss has elements of both conductive hearing loss and sensorineural hearing loss. This means there is damage to both the outer and inner ear. The outer ear cannot conduct sound properly to the inner ear, and the inner ear can’t process the sound to be sent to the brain. The sensorineural component (inner ear) is usually permanent, but the conductive hearing loss (outer ear) may not be. Many people with mixed hearing loss experience sounds as very soft in volume and difficult to understand.

Causes

Mixed hearing loss commonly occurs when the ear sustains some sort of trauma. It can also happen gradually over time when one hearing loss is compounded by another. For example, an individual with a long-standing conductive hearing loss might experience presbycusis as they age. Alternatively, an individual with sensorineural hearing loss may have a temporary mixed hearing loss due to wax impaction.

Symptoms of mixed hearing loss

The symptoms of a mixed hearing loss are reduced hearing in one or both ears (bilateral mixed hearing loss).

Treatment of mixed hearing loss

  • Hearing aids can often help people with mixed hearing loss. Behind-the-ear (BTE) style hearing aids may be the prescribed option, because their additional power is sometimes needed to address severe-to-profound sensorineural hearing loss.
  • Cochlear implants are also an option that can be used to address the sensorineural aspect of mixed hearing loss.
  • Conductive hearing loss can sometimes be treated with surgery, particularly in the case of a tumor or blockage.

 

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Top 7 Things You need to Know about Hearing Loss

  • Hearing loss is considered to be the third most common physical condition after arthritis and heart disease. It is also a major public health issue, since nearly 60{754741679431ceb09efae6e94320565469f785b1bbff1b66db1121ae80245ef8} of hearing loss patients are either in the workforce or in educational settings.
  • Hearing loss may be sudden, gradual or congenital. Sudden hearing loss is often noise-induced and can occur due to exposure to an excessively hazardous level of noise. For example, sudden noise-induced hearing from gunfire and explosions is the number one disability caused by combat in current wars.
  • Congenital (from birth) hearing loss that occurs in some children has a genetic cause. There are 400 known causes of genetic hearing loss, out of which most occur without any other symptoms apart from hearing loss.

  • Referred to as an “invisible condition,” hearing loss has symptoms that cannot be seen. You can only notice its effects, which are often confused with aloofness, confusion or personality changes.
  • In adults, hearing loss increases with age and is often confused with, or complicates, such conditions as dementia. Age-related hearing loss, known as presbycusis, is characterized by changes in the inner ear that happen as you get older and cause a slow but steady hearing loss. The loss may be mild or severe, but it is always permanent.
  • Ringing in the ears, or tinnitus, is a common companion of hearing loss. It is often considered to be just as debilitating as hearing loss itself, as patients seek medical assistance to deal with this irksome condition.
  • If left untreated, hearing loss can lead to cognitive decline. One of the best ways to prevent this is by using hearing aids.  These small instruments can be worn outside or inside the ear (almost invisible to the outside world) and help patients hear accurately and combat symptoms like tinnitus.

 

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Sensorineural hearing loss and It’s Causes

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

A sensorineural hearing loss happens when there is damage in your inner ear. Audiologists can help if you have this type of hearing loss.

What are the signs?

When present in both ears, sensorineural hearing loss will mean you may have difficulty understanding, even when speech seems loud enough. When in one ear, you may have difficulty locating sounds or hearing in background noise.

Causes of sensorineural hearing loss

  • Noise exposure – Sensorineural hearing loss can be caused by loud noise exposure, which can lead to damage
  • in the inner ear
    Aging – Aging is a main cause of all types of hearing loss – and therefore also sensorineural hearing loss
    Illnesses and conditions – Sensorineural hearing loss can be caused by several health conditions including:
    meningitis, Ménière’s disease, acoustic neuroma, multiple sclerosis, and malformation of the inner ear
  • Genetic or hereditary conditions – Genetic sensorineural hearing loss may affect infants from birth or develop later in life
  • Head trauma – Injuries to the head can cause damage to the inner ear, which in turn causes sensorineural hearing loss
  • Drugs and medication – Sensorineural hearing loss can be a side-effect of certain medications and cancer treatment
  • Congenital and birth-related hearing loss – Injections during pregnancy, complications during birth, premature birth, and hereditary predispositions can all cause sensorineural hearing loss in newborns
  • Treatment for sensorineural hearing loss
  • There is no cure for sensorineural hearing loss, but hearing aids can help people with sensorineural hearing loss to hear better. The best way to diagnose and treat sensorineural hearing loss is to visit a hearing professional for a full hearing evaluation.

 

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