Injury, birth defects, or the practice of “gauging” the ears can all lead to torn ear lobes. Not only are torn ear lobes unsightly, but they can also increase the odds of infection and may even affect the hearing. People are not destined to suffer forever, as torn ear lobe repair can help restore them to their former condition.
Split Earlobe Repair
A common problem involves a split or tear in the earlobe that is often caused by wearing heavy earrings or by an improperly-performed piercing. This type of torn earlobe repair is rather easy to perform, and requires only 20 minutes or so in a physician’s office. Using local anesthesia, a surgeon will simply sew the earlobe back together, using stitches that are placed on the back of the cartilage. Stitching the earlobes back together also firms and tightens tissue, and can therefore help restore a more youthful appearance to the ears.
Repairing Gauged Ears
Another reason why torn earlobe repair surgery could be needed is to correct gauging. While the holes that result from gauging may eventually shrink, they do not always fill in completely. The exact technique used will depend upon the placement and size of the hole; however, it generally involves removing scar tissue and then stitching the opening closed. This is a more involved procedure than simply repairing split earlobes, so it is often performed under intravenous sedation, which produces a very light sleep. Repairing gauged ears may take around 30 minutes or so per lobe.
Miscellaneous Ear Lobe Repair Surgery
Other types of torn earlobe repair surgery can often be performed on an outpatient basis using only local anesthesia. A cosmetic surgeon will tighten, trim, and contour the ear lobe to eliminate sagging, reduce the size of large lobes, or correct problems due to injury. The technique used will be custom tailored to fit each patient’s individual needs. Torn ear lobe repair can take around an hour or so per lobe, depending upon the extent of damage. Once the surgery is complete, patients are normally free to go about their day as normal.
Benefits of Surgery
Having torn earlobes can be very painful, and can make wearing headphones, and hats difficult. Surgery to correct torn lobes can help eliminate this pain and make wearing these things more comfortable. In as little as six to eight weeks after surgery, the ears can even be re-pierced. While these are all benefits, most people desire torn earlobe repair because they are self-conscious about their appearance. Having ears that appear more normal can go a long way toward increasing one’s self-confidence, and can even help an individual revamp his or her image and become more successful in the job market.
Torn earlobe repair surgery is becoming increasingly common among people of all ages. This is good news, as it means that new techniques are also being developed that will provide patients with better looking results, while also allowing them to enjoy less downtime and fewer complications.