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International Journal of Otolaryngology
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 851980, 4 pages
Research Article

Patient Satisfaction with Postaural Incision Site

Department ENT Head and Neck Surgery, Royal Cornwall Hospital, Truro TR1 3LJ, UK

Received 13 July 2014; Revised 29 August 2014; Accepted 12 September 2014; Published 24 September 2014

Academic Editor: Leonard P. Rybak

Copyright © 2014 George Barrett et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Introduction. Controversy exists over the optimum incision placement when performing ear surgery via the postauricular approach. Little is known about the impact of incision placement on future comfort in wearing audio or visual aids or the effect on the minor auricular muscles cut in the approach. Objective. (1) To establish patient satisfaction with their postauricular surgical incision, and to establish the impact on comfort wearing hearing or visual aids. (2) To establish whether patients’ voluntary ear movements were affected by surgery. Materials and Methods. In January 2014, questionnaires were sent to 81 patients who underwent mastoid surgery requiring a postauricular incision between January 2004 and December 2012. The incision placement was broadly the same for all patients as they were operated on by the same surgeon (or under his supervision). The incision is sited far posteriorly at the hairline. Results. 42 (52%) of the patients contacted responded. 80% of patients wearing glasses reported no discomfort or problems associated with their incision. 82% of patients who wear hearing aids were comfortable. Only 1 of the 5 patients who could move their ears preoperatively noticed a change afterwards. Conclusion. A hairline incision is well tolerated by most of the patients.