Newborn Ear Molding
It is estimated that 20-30% of newborns are born with some type of ear deformities. Many of the malformations of the ear correct themselves as they grow older. However, at birth, it is not known whether the shape will improve. One option for some ear malformations is ear molding, a non-surgical option for children to shape the ear in the first few weeks after a child is born. Dr. Rousso, a leading ear deformity specialist and facial plastic surgeon, offers ear molding for newborns through his clinic in Manhattan.
In the first few weeks of life, a newborn has higher levels of estrogen in the body, which makes cartilage more pliable and easier to shape. For centuries, congenital ear deformities have been shaped using various objects during this early stage of newborn development. When completed within the first six weeks of life, before estrogen levels drop, the ear can be effectively shaped when the right methods are used. This can prevent the need for surgical correction later in life and give the child a “normal” appearing ear from infancy.
Infant EarWell Advanced Molding System
For children with mild ear deformities where the structure of the ear is present but just misshaped, the EarWell advanced molding system can be used. Dr. Rousso performs ear molding on newborns that have prominent ears or other condition such as Stahl’s deformity, where the cartilage is misshaped, creating the “Spock” ear. The EarWell device can be placed on the infant’s ear for a few weeks by Dr. Rousso to reform the shape. In many cases, this non-surgical method is all that is needed to correct the congenital ear deformity which can be so much more invasive to repair later in life.
Parents of newborns with congenital ear deformities can contact Dr. Rousso at our office in NYC to learn more about early ear molding and other plastic surgery options for correcting ear malformations.