What is a meatoplasty/canaloplasty and why do I need this operation?
This operation is performed to widen your ear canals so that they do not get blocked with wax and debris. A meatoplasty concerns the soft tissue and cartilage of the ear. A canaloplasty concerns the widening of the bony canal within the ear.
What are the benefits of having a meatoplasty/canaloplasty?
The benefits of having these procedures are that your ear canal will be enlarged, which reduces the possibility of canal blockage and provides easier access to a mastoid cavity.
What are the risks, consequences and alternatives associated with having a meatoplasty/canaloplasty?
Most operations are straightforward, however as with any surgical procedure there is a small chance of side-effects or complications such as:
· Infection of the wound site (where the stitches are) may occur. This may cause pain, inflammation and tightness of the area. Occasionally, a discharge and/or bleeding may occur from the stitch line. Please contact the office for advice if this occurs.
· Reaction to the ear dressing. Occasionally the ear may develop an allergic reaction to the dressing in your ear canal and the outer ear (pinna) may become red and swollen. Once the dressing has been removed, the allergic reaction should settle down.
· There may be a change in the shape and appearance of your ear following the operation. This is due to swelling after the operation and will usually subside.
· There is a risk that your hearing may deteriorate following the operation. This is usually due to the packing and temporary.
· Once the pack is removed, the ear will still need time healing and may require further medication and/or packing.
· If you are concerned about any of these risks, or have any further queries, please speak to me.
Alternative to this procedure is regular attentive ear cleaning. There is also the option of not receiving any treatment at all. The consequences of not receiving any treatment are a build-up of wax and potential ear infections.
Getting ready for the operation
If you develop an ear infection whilst waiting for the operation, please contact the office so that
arrangements can be made for you to see a Dr Vermaak. If you have been prescribed eardrops,
please continue using these whilst waiting for the operation.
What sort of anaesthetic will I have?
Your operation will be carried out under general anaesthetic, which means you will be asleep
throughout. The anaesthetist will visit you before your operation and discuss the anaesthetic with you.
What should I expect after the operation?
When you return to the ward you may be sleepy. You will be given oxygen through a facemask until you are more awake. You will have your pulse, blood pressure, breathing and wounds checked regularly by a nurse. Anaesthetics can sometimes make people feel sick. The nurse may offer you an injection if the sick feeling does not go away, this will help to settle it. You will have a drip running into a vein in your arm/hand until you are eating and drinking again. A drink of water will be offered 1 - 2 hours after your return to the ward.
Dressings: You will have a yellow iodine pack in your ear which will make your hearing sound muffled. The ear pack will remain in your ear for approximately 7 days and will be removed by Dr Vermaak at your follow-up appointment. You will find it more comfortable to lie on your back or unaffected side.
Stitches: You will have stitches to hold the wound together whilst it heals. These may naturally dissolve or may need removing after a week. You will be advised which type have been used.
Pain: It is usual to feel some pain after your operation. Please use medication as prescribed.
Going home: Usually you are able to go home the same day or the day after your operation.