Give your child the gift of beautiful ears! Poughkeepsie EarWellTM Infant Ear Correction is a reconstructive procedure performed in any of our New York offices for infant patients with underdeveloped ears. There is no longer any reason to wait and hope your baby’s ears get better on their own over time. Do not wait for your child to have to undergo invasive surgery. If your newborn has an ear deformity you can now take comfort in knowing that, with the help of EarWellTM, our team of Board Certified Ear Surgeons will make sure your child’s ears are shaped normally.
While ear reshaping can be effective in young babies, it must be instituted very early after birth to be effective. By 6 to 8 weeks after birth, the ear cartilage begins to stiffen and can no longer be molded by any external means.
Who is a Candidate for EarWellTM Infant Ear Correction?
We are able to achieve the best results for your baby when EarWellTM therapy is started in the first 7 days of a baby’s life. We recognize starting this early may not be possible in all cases. We will may consider placing the EarWellTM at 3-4 weeks of age. However, since the ear cartilage may have already begun to harden by this time, the end results are harder to predict. We do not recommend starting therapy after 6 weeks of age.
If you are able to recognize your baby’s ear deformity in the first few days of its life, the deformity may be correctable by non-surgical molding of the ear while the cartilage is still soft and pliable. When a baby is born the ear cartilage is soft and easily shaped. Over the first 4-6 weeks of life, the cartilage gradually becomes more firm due to normal hormone and biochemical changes that occur in your baby.
Ear molding aims to reshape the ear while your child’s ear cartilage is still soft and then hold the new shape as the cartilage becomes more firm. Although there are many approaches to molding the ear, we are pleased to offer non-surgical correction of your baby’s ear deformity using the EarWellTM infant ear molding system.
The EarWellTM is also effective in treating prominent ears, ear cupping, abnormal cartilage folding, ear helical rim problems and crytpotia (or “buried ear”). EarWellTM therapy is not recommended for children with badly malformed or missing ears. We recommend otoplasty, or ear reashaping, for this.
If you are not sure whether your baby’s ear abnormality can be treated, you may email a photo of your child’s ear to your surgeon prior to scheduling an appointment. This way you can get an initial opinion if the EarWellTM is the right option for your child. Of course, scheduling a consulation in person, to get all of your questions answered, is always the best option.
What is the Recovery like for EarWellTM Infant Ear Correction?
EarWellTM infant ear correction is performed in one of our New York offices. Please visit our VIP Patients page for in-home service options.
The EarWellTM device consists of a shell, some soft rubber retractors to help shape the ear, and a breathable, soft rubber lid that helps hold all the components in place. The shell adheres to the skin around your baby’s ear. In most cases, a small amount of hair must be shaved to allow a smooth, hair-free space for the shell to be placed. Once the shell is set, 1-2 retractors are placed to help give shape to the ear, delivering the ear to a normal form. The lid of the device then gently snaps into place.
The EarWellTM device needs to remain in place for 4-6 weeks to help hold the new shape while the cartilage forms. Although we would like the device remain for this entire period of time, in reality, this is challenging with a newborn baby. If your baby’s EarWellTM begins to come off, we will simply replace the device in our office. It is important to let us know immediately if the device comes loose. We expect that most babies undergoing EarWellTM treatment will need the device replaced at least once, or perhaps twice, during treatment. This usually does not affect the outcome if you remain vigilant and let us know quickly if the device becomes displaced.
The risks of treatment with the EarWellTM device are very small. Risks include skin rashes from the adhesives used to apply the device, skin irritation from retained moisture, inadequate correction of the deformity or recurrence of the deformity after completion of therapy. There is also a risk of developing an open sore on the ear from the pressure of the device. However, this latter complication is extremely rare and your doctor will see your baby immedietly if any challenges arise.
Those parents considering infant ear correction should carefully evaluate their surgeon’s credentials and training. Our award-winning surgeons are Board Certified, with extensive knowledge to deliver the best cosmetic results while safeguarding proper hearing function.
To schedule a private consultation with the Hudson Valley, Westchester County and the Tri-State Area’s best otoplasty surgeons, please contact our Concierge Patient Coordinators at (845) 454-8025 or email us at info@NYfaceMD.com