This patient was referred to me by his pediatrician. He was a 2 week old beautiful baby boy who had a prominent ear on the left side only, with cupping of the ear. There was significant asymmetry, as his right ear was completely normal in shape. His mother brought him into the office for non-surgical correction of his ear deformity.
He was a perfect candidate for newborn ear molding with the EarWell Infant Ear Correction System. This is a painless mold that is placed on the ear in the first few weeks after birth. It has customized conformers which shape the ear and hold it in the correct position. During the first few weeks of birth, the ear cartilage is still soft and can be manipulated and molded. If ear molding is started during the first month after birth, the success rate is very high (over 90%).
This non-surgical correction of baby ear deformities saves them from undergoing a future ear pinning surgery when they are older. This avoids the potential years of taunting, teasing, and emotional side effects on a child. The old thought that the ear will correct on its own or that the baby will “grow into it” is false. A very small percentage of newborn ear deformities correct on their own, and if they do, that occurs in the first week of life. For any newborn ear deformities that don’t self-correct in the first week of life, they should be molded as soon as possible.
This procedure is performed in the office at the first visit, since time is of the essence. The average duration of molding is 4-6 weeks, depending on how early the molding is started. This baby boy was molded for 4 weeks total and had complete correction of his prominent ear and cup deformity. These are actual before and after images of his left ear deformity and the full correction after molding.
Insurance covers infant ear molding as they consider it a congenital deformity. However, if it is not corrected right after birth, they do not cover ear pinning surgery in childhood. When the child is older, they consider the procedure cosmetic. This is another reason to mold newborn ear deformities right after birth.
Visit our website dedicated to infant ear molding: www.infantearmolding.org
If you have a baby with an ear deformity or prominent ears, ear molding can be performed by Board Certified plastic surgeon Dr. Shareef Jandali at his Fairfield County, Connecticut office. Call 203-374-0310 to set up an appointment. We look forward to caring for your baby.