• Board Certified
    Philadelphia Facial Plastic Surgeon

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Cherry Hill  |  New Jersey 08003

Split Earlobe Repair Philadelphia

While it may seem like a relatively minor problem, thousands of people with pierced ears have torn earlobes that often require cosmetic correction. Furthermore, the popularity of other types of body piercing, such as gauge ear stretching, certainly has increased the number of cases. Torn earlobes are actually fairly common and can result from the regular wearing of heavy earrings, gauges or disks, ear jewelry becoming snagged on sweaters, hairbrushes or even the acts of playing children. An actual lobe tear may present as a partial or a full thickness tear that completely splits the earlobe. Torn earlobes are not only painful but can also be disturbing to patients from a cosmetic standpoint. These types of injuries, depending on their severity, are unattractive and embarrassing.

The surgical repair of a torn earlobe is a fairly simple process and the procedure usually lasts about fifteen minutes. The procedure begins with a local anesthetic injected in the earlobe to numb the area. Depending upon the severity of the tear, there are several means of repair. Partial wounds are treated by excising the affected area and closing the hole with a re-suturing technique. Total lobe tears require more surgery and are corrected by repairing the borders of the tear and using dissolvable sutures on the ear.

The recovery from a partial or full lobe tear is generally a straightforward process. Dissolvable stitches are used and the patient can resume normal activities nearly immediately. After about a week, the stitches dissolve and a fine linear scar may be visible for a few weeks. For scars that do not heal to invisibility, the area can be resurfaced using a variety of cosmetic scar revision techniques. While re-piercing is acceptable after three months, patients are strongly encouraged to exercise caution with future jewelry.

Earlobe reconstruction can be performed on extreme piercings where individuals intentionally stretch or disfigure the lobes from trendy body piercing technique. Furthermore, many people are born with very large or deformed earlobes. These conditions can also be corrected with a cosmetic procedure.