The purpose of otoplasty is to change the size, position, or configuration of protruding or abnormal ears. Protruding ears frequently cause psychological problems in young children, despite efforts to camouflage them with long hair. Since ears reach adult size by age 5 or 6, the surgery can be done at that time or later – thereby allowing a child or an adult to avoid unnecessary and often cruel remarks by insensitive peers. An incision is placed on the back of the ear so it is not seen. Portions of cartilage are removed, and the remainder is molded as necessary to achieve the desired contour. Sutures are frequently placed in the cartilage under the skin to maintain the proper shape.