Predicting Skin Deficits Through Surface Area Measurements in Ear Reconstruction and Adult Ear Surface Area Norms

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Abstract

Ear reconstruction is one of the most challenging procedures in plastic surgery practice. Many studies and techniques have been described in the literature for carving a well-pronounced framework. However, just as important as the cartilage framework is the ample amount of delicate skin coverage of the framework. In this report, we introduce an innovative method of measuring the skin surface area of the auricle from a three-dimensional template created from the healthy ear.

The study group consisted of 60 adult Turkish individuals who were randomly selected (30 men and 30 women). The participant ages ranged from 18 to 45 years (mean, 31.5 years), and they had no history of trauma or congenital anomalies. The template is created by dividing the ear into aesthetic subunits and using ImageJ software to estimate the necessary amount of total skin surface area required.

Reconstruction of the auricle is a complicated process that requires experience and patience to provide the auricular details. We believe this estimate will shorten the learning curve for residents and surgeons interested in ear reconstruction and will help surgeons obtain adequate skin to drape over the well-sculpted cartilage frameworks by providing a reference list of total ear skin surface area measurements for Turkish men and women.

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