If your earlobes have been damaged or injured in any way, you can restore them with earlobe repair surgery. This relatively quick and easy procedure will bring your lobes back to a normal size and shape without any downtime.
When Is Earlobe Surgery Right for Me?
Earlobes can become damaged in a few different ways:
- Torn from a Trauma–You’ve had your earlobe torn from an earring getting ripped out or by an injury. This can be a painful experience that can leave you with dangling, or even missing, lobe skin.
- Stretched From Large, Heavy Earrings–Oftentimes, women stretch out their lobes from years of wearing large, heavy earrings that dangle and sway. While attractive and stylish, the constant tug and pull of the heavy jewelry can lead to elongated and unsightly earlobes.
- Gauging–More common these days is surgery to repair earlobe holes that have been expanded gradually over time with large-gauge earrings. This practice can lead to extreme gaping openings that can really thin out the tissues. While you may love the look in your youth, you might consider restoring your lobes to their original state with this operation.
What’s the Earlobe Repair Procedure Like?
Compared to most reconstruction procedures, earlobe surgery is a fairly simple and straightforward surgery. Earlobe repair is typically performed as an in-office treatment. After evaluating the condition of your damaged tissues, your surgeon will choose the technique most appropriate for your situation. The areas will be numbed with local anesthesia and the separated lobe will be reattached with sutures. The procedure usually takes less than an hour.
How Do I Care for My Lobes After Surgery?
Once your surgery is finished, bandages or surgical dressings will be applied in order to minimize bruising and swelling, stave off infection, and keep their restored shape. And these dressings should be left on for several days after the procedure. You’ll be scheduled with a follow-up appointment within a week to remove the sutures and to monitor your progress.
There’s typically no downtime with this procedure and most patients are able to return to their normal routines almost immediately. However, you should avoid more extreme activities like intense exercise and heavy lifting for a few weeks, or until your surgeon gives you the go-ahead. You may experience some slight pain, swelling, or discomfort for the first few days following your surgery, but this can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
What Will My Earlobe Surgery Scars Look Like?
For most patients, a little scarring is nothing after having their lobe torn or stretched out. And fortunately, the scar will be rather slight and not very noticeable. As with any procedure, your surgeon will make every effort to minimize the resulting marks as much as possible. And your hairstyle may even conceal the blemishes.
When Will My Earlobes Be Back to Normal?
It will take six to eight weeks for the swelling to go down completely and for the earlobes to fully heal. At this time, the final results can then be seen: The earlobes will appear symmetrical and natural, and have a normal contour.
Will I Be Able to Pierce My Ears Again?
Of course! After two or three months, the ears may be re-pierced, if desired. But keep in mind that the repaired lobes will be weaker now than they were before they were torn or stretched, which could make them more susceptible to tearing again. And because of that, you may want to rethink the style of earpieces that you wear, as smaller, lighter earrings are recommended.
Earlobe Surgery in Southern California at UCI Plastic Surgery
If you’d like to learn more about repairing a torn or stretched earlobe, please schedule your initial consultation at UCI Plastic Surgery’s Orange, Costa Mesa, or Tustin locations today. Our dedicated surgical team is committed to helping all of our Southern California patients look their very best.