How Does MEDPOR Compare to Rib Cartilage Ear Reconstruction? By Dr. John Reinisch on March 30, 2023

Child holding a shell to his earMicrotia is a birth defect that affects the ear. Microtia causes the external ear to appear small and malformed. Microtia usually affects one ear, but it could affect both. Dr. John Reinisch offers microtia treatment at his Beverly Hills, CA, plastic surgery practice. Microtia treatment rebuilds the ear to improve its size and shape.

Dr. Reinisch’s patients can consider MEDPOR® vs. rib cartilage reconstruction for microtia treatment. Here, we explain how MEDPOR compares to rib cartilage ear reconstruction and discuss the benefits of the MEDPOR technique created by Dr. Reinisch.

What Is the Difference Between MEDPOR and Rib Cartilage Ear Reconstruction?

The primary difference between MEDPOR and rib cartilage is the material used for the reconstruction. During traditional ear reconstruction, surgeons use rib cartilage to rebuild the ear. Rib cartilage is collected from the patient’s body in a separate surgical procedure.

MEDPOR ear reconstruction uses a microporous, high-density polyethylene implant to rebuild the ear. The MEDPOR material is biocompatible. Since MEDPOR material is also porous, it allows blood vessels and skin to integrate with the implant, which creates lifelike surgical results.

Benefits of MEDPOR

MEDPOR ear construction offers several benefits that set it apart from rib cartilage ear reconstruction. Many of our Beverly Hills patients prefer the MEDPOR technique because it allows for earlier surgical treatment, requires fewer surgeries, and results in less discomfort and scarring than rib cartilage ear reconstruction.

Earlier Treatment

Rib cartilage ear reconstruction usually can’t be performed until between the ages of eight and 10, when the child has sufficient rib cartilage to create the implant framework. The MEDPOR technique lowers the minimum age requirement to three or four years old, allowing children to undergo ear reconstruction before they start school. Treatment at an earlier age is especially beneficial if the patient requires ear canal repair because it reduces the risk of speech disorders or language difficulties.

Fewer Surgeries

Rib cartilage ear reconstruction requires at least two surgeries to harvest the cartilage, form it into a framework, and place it in the ear. Additional surgeries may be necessary to make cosmetic adjustments. Dr. Reinisch usually completes MEDPOR ear reconstruction in a single surgical procedure, saving our Beverly Hills patients the time, money, and discomfort of multiple surgeries.

Less Discomfort and Scarring

Rib cartilage ear reconstruction may be more painful than MEDPOR reconstruction because it requires two or more surgeries. Additionally, patients often experience discomfort at the donor site. Patients can expect more visible scarring with the rib cartilage technique because there will be a scar at the donor site.

MEDPOR is usually completed in a single surgical procedure that involves less discomfort. Patients can expect a scar at the skin graft site, but Dr. Reinisch collects the graft from beneath the scalp, where any remaining scar is easily concealed.

Contact Us

The MEDPOR technique created by Dr. John Reinisch offers many benefits over rib cartilage ear reconstruction. If you would like to learn more about the microtia treatment options offered at our plastic surgery practice, send us a message online or call (833) 896-3277 and request a consultation.

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Dr. John Reinisch, MD

Reinisch Plastic Surgery

  • Exceptionally well-qualified
  • Graduate of Harvard Medical School
  • Board-certification in plastic surgery 
  • Created the MEDPOR® technique in 1991
  • Has successfully treated over 20,000 children 

Patients come from across the country and around the world to benefit from his expert care. To schedule your consultation, contact our office online or call us at (833) 896-3277

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Reinisch Plastic Surgery

9033 Wilshire Blvd.
Ste 200
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

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