Ear Molding with Dr. Jandali - Rye & Rye Brook Moms
Dr. Shareef Jandali is a board-certified plastic surgeon practicing in Connecticut
and New York City. He completed his plastic surgery residency training at the
University of Pennsylvania and his pediatric plastic surgery training at the
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. He has been in practice for 12 years and
specializes in ear molding for newborn ear deformities. He treats patients from all
areas of Rye and Rye Brook, NY, for ear molding at his Manhattan or Connecticut office.

What is newborn ear molding?

Ear molding is a non-surgical procedure used to reshape a babys ears soon after birth when there is an
ear deformity present. The purpose of ear molding is to avoid future corrective ear surgery (otoplasty)
and obtain natural-appearing and symmetric ears in a newborn.

How did you get started doing ear molding?

I started ear molding after my first daughter was born over 10 years ago. She had a mild ear deformity
on one side. I knew this could be corrected non-surgically with ear molding, but I didn’t perform it at
that time and had none of the supplies needed. We called both Children’s Hospitals in Connecticut and
neither performed it. So, we ended up bringing her down to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
where I did my training, so that my mentor could perform the procedure. She got a perfect symmetric
result after 5 weeks of ear molding. After that, I started performing ear molding at my Connecticut
office, but soon had parents traveling from NYC up to Connecticut for molding. When I realized there are
very few plastic surgeons performing this in NYC, I started seeing babies at my Manhattan office to make
it more convenient for new parents. I have developed my own techniques and molds to be able to offer
it to older babies (up to 3-4 months old) and babies with more severe deformities.

At what age should ear molding be started in babies?

Ideally, ear molding should begin within the first few weeks after birth. A baby's ear cartilage is still soft
and pliable from the estrogen that is still in the baby from the mother. The estrogen levels start to drop
by 5-6 weeks old, so molding should be started before the ear cartilage starts to harden and then
continued as it hardens in the new improved shape. The earlier ear molding is started, the shorter the
treatment period.
What is the oldest age you will offer ear molding?
I have performed ear molding up to 3-4 months of age for certain deformities. At this age, I can usually
still obtain an improvement, but I may not be able to obtain full correction or perfect symmetry. Parents
of babies with ear deformities in Rye and Rye Brook, NY, should reach out to our office early after birth
for potential ear molding.

What types of ear deformities can be treated with ear molding?

Ear molding is performed to correct misshapen baby ears or ears that appear too large. Some examples
include the following:

Prominent Ears: These are baby ears that stick out too far from the sides of the head, making them look
too large. This occurs due to poor formation of a fold of cartilage that holds the ears back. Ear molding
can establish a well-defined fold which brings the ears closer to the head.

 

Folded or Pointed Ears: These are infant ears where the cartilage on the top of the ear folds over or is
pointed. Ear molding can unfold or round out any pointed part of the outer ear cartilage and make it a
smooth natural curve.

Constricted Ears: These are newborn ears where the cartilage of the outer ear rim is constricted and
tight, leading to an ear that looks squished and smaller. This can also make the baby ear stick out more
or look cupped. Ear molding can gently stretch the tight cartilage and skin and pull the ear back into a
more normal position.

Uneven Baby Ears: Sometimes it is hard for a parent to describe what the actual ear deformity is or
there are a few deformities present in one ear. Almost all outer ear deformities can be corrected with
ear molding.


How is ear molding performed? Do you offer EarWell ear molding for newborns in
Rye and Rye Brook, NY?

Ear molding is performed by creating a customized mold, either with the EarWell device, or by making
one out of soft medical grade silicone gel. The mold holds the ear in the desired shape and gently
stretches the cartilage until it hardens. I use the EarWell device on certain deformities, but it doesn’t fit
older babies with larger ears. I usually make my own customized molds, which fit babies’ ears better
especially as they grow.

Is ear molding painful for the baby?

Not at all. Usually the baby is sleeping, feeding from a bottle, or using a pacifier as the ear molding is
being performed. The soft, custom-made ear splints do not cause excessive pressure, so they are not
painful at all. Most babies completely ignore the ear molds and don’t touch or grab them. Babies can
still roll on their sides and be placed in car seats. Parents aren’t limited with use of hats or headbands.
The ear molds don’t affect breastfeeding either – we just ask mothers to hold a cloth over the ear so
that no drops of milk enter the mold. The molds don’t cover the ear canal, so they don’t affect hearing
development.

How long does the ear molding process take?

The duration of ear molding varies depending on the type of the deformity, the severity of the
deformity, and at what age the process is started. In most cases, it takes 4-6 weeks of molding to obtain
the necessary correction. Adjustments are made to the ear mold every 1-2 weeks to check on progress,
make adjustments, and clean the ear.

How effective is ear molding for correction of misshapen baby ears?

Ear molding is highly effective with success rates almost 100% when started in the first few weeks after
birth. Even after the first few weeks, we can usually obtain significant improvement in appearance and
symmetry of the ears.

What should parents in Rye and Rye Brook, NY, know about any potential risks
or complications with ear molding?

Ear molding is very safe as it is non-surgical and uses medical grade soft silicone parts and adhesive.
Occasionally, there can be mild side effects, such as skin irritation or redness underneath the tape or the mold. These usually occur when milk or spit up get under the mold or the adhesive. If this occurs, we
remove the mold and allow the irritation to resolve before reapplying another ear mold.

How many ear moldings do you perform a year?

I perform about 100 ear moldings a year between Connecticut and NYC. Over the last few years, there
has been an increase in awareness of this amazing option for non-surgical correction of newborn ear
deformities.

Are there many specialists for ear molding in Rye or Rye Brook, NY?

There are very few plastic surgeons or pediatric ENTs that are trained to perform ear molding. Not many
surgeons are comfortable performing ear molding in a safe and effective manner. When choosing an ear
molding provider, be sure to look for someone with lots of before and after photos, showing their
expertise correcting a wide variety of ear deformities.

Is ear molding covered by insurance?

Most insurance companies cover ear molding as they consider it medically necessary to correct a
congenital ear deformity. We obtain insurance authorization and check benefits before the first
appointment.

How do parents in Rye and Rye Brook, NY, learn more about ear molding or contact your office?

Parents can call our office directly to set up an appointment. The Connecticut office phone number is
(203) 374-0310 and the NYC office phone number is (917) 708-0018. They can also visit our website for
more information: https://ear-molding.com/. Parents living in Rye and Rye Brook, NY, could choose
either office location based on convenience.

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