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Restoring Confidence with Lifelike Prosthetics

Restoring Confidence with Lifelike Prosthetics

Microtia and prosthetics

Parents of children with any birth difference are faced with many decisions.  Our website is designed to answer many questions about ear prostheses, but feel free to call us at 1-877-203-7829 toll-free to discuss your individual needs and schedule an initial consultation.  Resources such as Ear Community provide excellent information for families with questions about microtia.

Questions You May Have

What treatment options are available for microtia?

Treatment options for microtia include:

  • no treatment
  • surgical ear reconstruction
  • prosthetic restoration of the ear

There are advantages and disadvantages associated with each option. Surgical reconstructive options should be discussed with otolaryngologists (ear, nose and throat specialists) and/or facial plastic reconstructive surgeons. Otolaryngologists and audiologists (hearing specialists) should be consulted to evaluate the hearing loss associated with atresia (absence of the ear canal). As clinical anaplastologists we are prepared to answer your questions about the benefits and limitations of prosthetic restoration of the ear.

Microtia, or an underdeveloped ear

At what age is a child ready for an ear prosthesis?

We are happy to schedule an initial consultation for a child of any age to discuss prosthetic treatment options. Although every child is different, children who are at least six years old tend to be aware of their facial difference and are able to participate in the treatment process. There is no obligation or pressure to proceed with treatment.

Child after microtia was removed for implant placementProsthetic ear as treatment for microtia

Do you work with adults with microtia?

We meet many teens and adults of all ages who have not had surgical or prosthetic treatment and want to explore the benefits and limitations of ear prosthetics. If you have had surgical ear reconstruction or prosthetic restoration that is unsatisfactory, we will listen to your concerns and discuss your options honestly. There is no obligation or pressure to proceed with treatment.

Adult with microtia, or an underdeveloped earEar prosthesis fits over little earRight ear prosthesis in place over microtia

Is it necessary to have the underdeveloped ear (microtia) removed?

Some patients choose to keep their underdeveloped ear. Others decide to surgically remove the underdeveloped ear in preparation for an ear prosthesis. Maintaining the underdeveloped ear preserves tissue that could be valuable for future surgical reconstruction. However, designing a prosthesis that fits over an underdeveloped ear may compromise its form. During your consultation, we assist with decision-making by sharing examples of similar patients.

Some patients save the little earProsthesis designed to fit over little ear.

Are prosthetic ears an option when both ears are affected?

We have considerable experience creating convincing ear prostheses for individuals born with bilateral microtia (both ears underdeveloped). We have developed a systematic approach to determine the appropriate size, location and shape for bilateral prosthetic ears to ensure a natural appearance. Our system was presented at the Third International Symposium-Bone Conduction Hearing — Craniofacial Osseointegration.

Right magnetic attachment. Left magnetic attachment. Bilateral implant-retained auricular prostheses.