Medical Art Prosthetics Auricular Prothetic Difference

Are You Happy With Your Prosthetic Ear?

Medical Art Prosthetics designs new auricular (ear) prostheses for individuals from across the country who are ready for a new or a better ear prosthesis. As specialists in facial prosthetics we focus our talents and commit whatever time and energy our conscience dictates as medical artists in creating prostheses of such naturalism they could be seen as works of art. Our results consistently please our patients and physicians who recognize our work.

The difference in the level of care and precision that go into the design of your prosthesis may be difficult for you and others to appreciate. For this reason we compare some sample prostheses that were not created by Medical Art Prosthetics with the prostheses that we subsequently provided to replace them. The sample prostheses shown here were created by various practitioners in a variety of settings. They were very likely delivered in a professional manner with great care, and we respect each practitioner’s dedication and effort. However, the improvements we offer in aesthetics and durability can be dramatic and have a dramatic effect on the wearer’s feeling about themselves and their appearance. Therefore, we as professionals feel compelled to educate in any way that helps with informed decision making.

In the comparisons we present it should be noted that the previous prostheses are not faulted on the basis of normal deterioration. All prostheses are subject to normal discoloration and degradation over time, including ours. However, aside from normal discoloration and deterioration, these sample prostheses demonstrate fundamental failures or shortcomings involving materials, design, anatomical detail or initial color definition and surface texture. Patients still often wear their current prostheses when they come to our offices, but they always leave feeling that we have improved their experience of wearing an ear prosthesis. We applaud all efforts of our colleagues in the prosthetics field, but we specialize and in auricular prosthetics that can make a world of difference in a person’s life.

Color

The prosthesis on the left was not created by Medical Art Prosthetics. It appears at this stage of deterioration to be almost monochromatic (lacking in color variation) which results in a “plastic” look. The patient received our newly designed prosthesis on the right which featured the skin-like surface details such as superficial blood vessels, moles and hyperpigmentation. Deeper layering of yellow tones also creates the illusion of antihelix cartilage beneath the skin and a matted ear lobe connotes fleshy tissues that make the final ear prosthesis more natural – more real. Ear prostheses should not be monochromatic. Rather, they should possess pink, amber, scarlet, and umber at different depths, even lavender in discrete zones – all rendered carefully to make your prosthesis look alive.

Fabrication

These 2 ear prosthesis examples were not created by Medical Art Prosthetics. They have several problems:

  • Anatomical structure is lacking in detail and refinement.
  • Coloration is very superficial and opaque.
  • Reworked surface looks hurried and crude.

Material Breakdown

The deteriorated bar/clip-retained ear prosthesis was not created by Medical Art Prosthetics. This prosthesis was fracturing throughout the bulk material and separating from the acrylic substructure. The patient resorted to using medical adhesives to hold the prosthesis together.

The new prosthesis we provided utilized a high performance medical silicone with proper appropriate characterization and a mechanically anchored bar/clip substructure for greater integrity and durability.

Non-standard Material

This patient wore 2 different older prostheses NOT provided by Medical Art Prosthetics. They both were made in a non-standard material and lack correct size and color characterization and opacity. They are too translucent. Our prosthesis addressed these issues.

Refinement

Photos 4-6 document a patient’s bar/clip osseointegration-retention system and two prosthesis attempts that she had received elsewhere. Photos 1-3 are of the new prosthesis that she received from Medical Art Prosthetics and a comparison of the ear prosthesis treatments.

Retention

The patient’s older implant-retained ear prosthesis (NOT provided by Medical Art Prosthetics) was fitted with an ordinary samarium cobalt non-sealed magnet which corroded causing skin irritation and attachment failure. We prepared a new auricular prosthesis with a powerful low-profile neodymium iron boron magnet encased and sealed in corrosion-proof and inert titanium. All materials used by Medical Art Prosthetics are biocompatible, safe and designed to last years.

Symmetry

The ear prosthesis created by Medical Art Prosthetics is often photographed next to the unaffected ear to evaluate not only the development of accurate color characterization, but also to verify that the prosthesis will continue to match the unaffected ear color as our client is seen in different lighting situations. The example below illustrates how the ear prosthesis matches with natural light and a flash.

Photographs of the patient’s older ear prosthesis (Red X) are sometimes taken next to our new prosthesis to document the improvements over the deteriorated obsolete prosthesis. These images serve as documentation and are sometimes helpful for insurance or other 3rd party payers if proof of or justification for the new silicone auricular prosthesis are needed.