What is the Earfold implant?

The Earfold implant is a new method for correcting prominent ears, that’s a lot more simple and minimally invasive than traditional pinnaplasty surgery.

The implant is made of a titanium and nickel alloy, coated with a gold outer layer. Especially designed to hold its shape in a permanent curve, once implanted, the Earfold holds the ear in a more pinned back position. And thanks to the design and materials used, there’s also less chance of rejection or irritation occurring in reaction to the implant.

Will I be suitable for Earfold?

This really depends on what’s causing your ears to be prominent, and how far forward they’re protruding. These factors will be discussed with you during your consultation, so you can be sure you know what to expect and can make the best decision for you. Earfold implants aren’t always suitable, but a lot of the time they’re a desirable and effective solution with minimal risks.

What are the complications of Earfold?

A traditional pinnaplasty can achieve a greater degree of pinning back than Earfold alone, but it’s a more complex procedure that requires general anaesthetic, takes longer, and means a longer recovery period. Earfold implants can be inserted with just local anaesthetic used to numb the area first, so it won’t be painful – however, this means the procedure takes considerably less time and you’ll be able to go home shortly afterwards.

Also, the beauty of Earfold is that you can see in advance how your ears should look after the treatment thanks to the Prefold system, something that isn’t possible with traditional pinnaplasty. During your consultation, your surgeon can clip the Prefolds onto the outside of your ears, so you can see how they’ll look once the real implants are in place. This means you can feel reassured  that you know what to expect and confident you’re making the best decision for you.

What are the possible complications of Earfold?

You should not experience many problems at all after any kind of pinnaplasty. After Earfold, there may be some mild discomfort, and it is possible to get a little bleeding from the wound and all procedures carry a small risk of infection, although this is generally unlikely. 

The main risk or concern is that it is not always possible to guarantee that the ears will return to a cosmetically perfect position. It’s not unusual for there to be a slight difference in the appearances of the two ears after treatment, which in any case exists naturally in most people. Also, thanks to the Prefold system mentioned previously, which enables you to see the likely results before going ahead with the procedure, you should be able to note any differences between the two years during your consultation. That said, if you are not happy with the final results, an Earfold implant can also be removed.

Why should I consider Earfold as opposed to traditional pinnaplasty?

These are the key advantages of the Earfold implant:

Owing to the simplicity of the surgery, the operation only takes 15 minutes per ear, compared with 40 minutes per ear for conventional pinnaplasty

Recovery is faster. Typically you require only 2-3 days off work after the procedure, compared with 1-2 weeks for traditional pinnaplasty

The surgery is routinely performed under a local anaesthetic, in contrast to most traditional pinnaplasty procedures which require a general anaesthetic

You do not need a heavy head bandage after the procedure, unlike for traditional pinnaplasty. You will still however need to use a light sports-type band at night for the first 6 weeks, as for traditional pinnaplasty

The risk of suffering complications, such as infections, is significantly reduced, as no stitches or long incisions are used

You can see how your ears will look by using the Prefold implant during the initial consultation. This is placed on the outside of your ear and will show you the likely end result following the surgery. This isn’t possible with traditional pinnaplasty

In theory, the implant can be removed in the future, therefore the procedure is technically reversible, unlike traditional pinnaplasty

What does an Earfold operation entail?

A local anaesthetic is injected into the skin in front of the ear, just underneath the outer rim. A small incision is made, and the Earfold implant is then inserted into a carefully prepared pocket. The cut is then stitched with dissolvable sutures. The procedure takes approximately 15 minutes per ear.

What is the aftercare after Earfold?

A light dressing may be applied over the incisions. You will be advised to wear a sports-type head band at night for the first 6 weeks and to keep the ears clean and dry for the first week. Occasional pain killers may be needed as required.

How do I enquire and what does Earfold cost in London?

Our specialist team is happy to answer any questions you may have. For more information about Earfold surgery and Earfold cost in London or to book a consultation, please get in touch by calling 020 3075 3150. 

Book your consultation today

Paul Chatrath
Consultant Rhinologist / Facial Plastic & ENT Surgeon
150 Harley Street