Conchal Excision Techniques in Otoplasty: A Literature Review

Adrian Georg Mogl, Alen Palackic, Janos Cambiaso-Daniel, Robert P. Duggan, Monica Vappiani, Camilla Giraudi, Edoardo Raposio, Dario Bertossi, Alessandro Gualdi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Prominent ears are a common congenital deformity of the head and neck. Correcting concha hypertrophy is an important step in otoplasty. Despite the risk of postoperative deformity due to the sharp edges created by excision, removing a section of cartilage is sometimes the only method to obtain a satisfying and long-lasting result. Multiple conchal excision techniques have been reported in the literature, with significant differences in approach, outcome evaluation, and complication classification. The objective was to review cartilage excision-based otoplasty procedures to offer plastic surgeons' insights into current data on outcomes and complications of conchal excision techniques. Methods: We conducted a literature search through the MEDLINE, EMBASE, Scopus, and Cochrane databases. Prospective and retrospective studies on otoplasty, including revision surgeries and conchal excision techniques involving concha cartilage resection, were included. Articles with no outcomes data, review articles, case reports, expert opinion or comment, and nonclinical studies were excluded. Results: There were a total of four manuscripts that fulfilled our criteria. Three out of four authors preferred posterior access that separates the skin excision from the cartilage excision. Following resection, cartilage edges can be approximated by placing cartilage sutures, or they can be allowed to collapse spontaneously. Although only two authors employed a systematic classification for complications, all the articles reviewed indicated a low complication rate and excellent postoperative cosmetic outcomes. Conclusion: Although the techniques and principles stated in the literature varied to some extent, the outcomes of all studies reviewed were comparable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E4381
JournalPlastic and Reconstructive Surgery - Global Open
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 15 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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