Challenges of successfully wearing any prosthetic device – including silicone prosthetic ears for children – are relative to the way they are crafted and cared for. Of course, any prosthesis is removable so it requires some care and cleaning. Therefore, the edges of the prosthesis where they blend with the skin may become loose or worn causing them to be more visible. They then may require rebonding with adhesives or refinement of the material. Skin color and the coloration of the prosthesis both change from sun exposure over time so the prosthesis will eventually need retinting or replacement in order to continue to match and blend in.
Many of the challenges of prostheses are so well addressed by dedicated silicone ear prosthesis specialists that prosthesis wear becomes a far superior choice relative to the alternative of accepting the attention of untreated microtia or having complicated surgery attempts to build an ear that never looks normal, let alone one that matches the unaffected side. It is true that any prosthesis no matter how expertly crafted will lose color over time and have margins that may be visible to you. However, planning for retinting or replacement of your child’s prosthesis and realizing that expertly planned margins are rarely detectable by others make the accurate prosthesis the optimal lifetime choice.
Proponents of ear reconstructive surgery will also point out that a disadvantage of the ear prosthesis is that its routine removal and the lack of sensation when touching the prosthesis reminds the patient that its not part of their body. However, like a removable denture or hairpiece all prostheses have functions so valuable they far outweigh going without. So one must weigh the few minutes involved in daily prosthesis attachment and removal against many hours each day feeling uncomfortable hiding a poorly formed or failed surgical reconstruction by wearing a long hair style or just accepting the same looks, stares and questions that arise from living with untreated microtia. An artistically rendered and well maintained ear prosthesis is virtually undetectable. Decades of practice has proven that a relationship develops between prosthetist and patient and the care and passion going into the prosthesis translates to a confidence for the patient of feeling and looking completely balanced, normal and unremarkable throughout their daily life.