There are countless urban legends about people who experienced an accident and were left with disfigured earlobes. Unfortunately, damaged earlobes are not actually that rare—they happen all the time. The good news, however, is that they can be easily repaired. Earlobe repair is a surgical procedure designed to reconstruct torn, injured, or abnormally shaped earlobes. This procedure can repair earlobes that have been stretched because of heaving earrings, gauges or plugs, giving them a nice, round, normal appearance that can be re-pierced. Here at Premier Image Cosmetic and Laser Surgery, we are pleased to offer high quality earlobe repair in our Atlanta office.
Earlobe Repair – Dr. Louis DeJoseph, Atlanta Georgia
Benefits of Earlobe Repair
There are a number of benefits patients can enjoy after undergoing an earlobe repair. Some of these benefits include:
Expanded Hairstyling Options
Many patients that come to us for earlobe repair explain that they cover their damaged earlobe with their hair. When they do this, they limit their hairstyle and haircut options. It can be particularly difficult for males to cover damaged earlobes since most of them have short haircuts. By opting for earlobe repair surgery, patients can select any type of hair cut or style they’d like and don’t have to take their earlobe into consideration.
New Jewelry Possibilities
Earrings and other jewelry give people an opportunity to express themselves—but with stretched out earlobes, some people are very limited on what types of jewelry they can wear. Earlobe repair can give both women and men the chance to restore their damaged lobes so they can wear any type of earrings once again.
Even if an individual with damaged earlobes finds a way to hide them, they will know the problem is there and may still be self-conscious. By repairing their earlobe, they can boost their confidence and won’t have to worry about their earlobe negatively affecting their personal and professional life.
Although living with a damaged earlobe may not be as bad as many other conditions, there’s no reason to live with it when it can safely and quickly be repaired.
Best Candidates for Earlobe Repair
Anyone who was born with abnormally large or small earlobes is potentially a good candidate for an earlobe repair. In addition, individuals who have developed earlobe injuries caused by earrings or trauma could benefit from earlobe repair. For example, patients often come to us for earlobe repair if they regularly wear heavy, long earrings or gauges, that has caused their piercing holes to stretch and elongate.
Other good candidates are those who believe their earlobes look too elongated or old for their face. Those with keloids, an abnormal scar tissue growth can benefit from an earlobe repair as well. The doctor will have the final say on individual candidacy, and she will recommend an individualized treatment plan for each patient.
Preparing for Earlobe Repair
The surgeon will provide patients who have scheduled an earlobe repair procedure with very specific preparation instructions which may include:
- Avoiding any products that contain aspirin for at least one week before the surgery.
- Refraining from smoking and alcohol for at least 48 hours prior to surgery. If smoking and alcohol are not discontinued, wound healing and other complications may occur.
Patients will not have to worry about finding a ride home after surgery because they will be able to drive themselves home. In addition, there won’t be any dietary restrictions.
What to Expect From Earlobe Repair
An earlobe repair is a relatively simple, outpatient procedure. Your surgeon will begin by injecting local anesthesia into the earlobe to numb the area. The surgical technique he uses will depend on the type of repair required.
In the event a patient has a partial tear, your surgeon will remove the damaged portion of the skin and stitch the skin back together using small sutures so that the earlobe forms a natural shape.
If a patient has a full tear or has significantly stretched or gauged their earlobes, she will rearrange the tissue to replace damaged tissue. She will then place tiny sutures. Once the procedure is over, the patient will be left with natural looking earlobes.
Recovering From Earlobe Repair
Fortunately, earlobe repair is a quick and pain-free procedure that allows patients to drive themselves home after the procedure. The surgeon will prescribe an antibiotic ointment for patients to apply as well as a bandage that should be worn for five days to a week.
Patients who experience some pain or discomfort can turn to over-the-counter pain medications to find relief. Any swelling or bruising that they may face should fade within one to two weeks. About one week after the procedure, the sutures will be removed.
If possible, patients should refrain from wearing earrings for a minimum of two months and avoid heavy earrings for at least six months. Additionally, they should avoid wearing turtlenecks and holding a phone to the affected area for one week following surgery.
Earlobe Repair Consultations
Patients who are interested in earlobe repair should schedule a consultation at our Atlanta plastic surgery center. During the consultation, she will examine a patient’s earlobe as well as the severity of their tear, stretch, or scarring. Then, she will make suggestions that are specific to their issue and discuss treatment goals. The consultation will give the patient the opportunity to ask any questions or address any concerns regarding an earlobe repair.
Frequently Asked Questions About Earlobe Repair
You may require earlobe repair if:
• You have droopy earlobes
• You have stretched piercings
• Your earrings always fall out or constantly catch on to your clothes or pillow
You may also want to consider earlobe repair if your lobes have experienced trauma.
Yes. Many patients visit Premier Image Cosmetic and Laser Surgery because their earlobes have been damaged from gauged piercings. Fortunately, repairing this damage is a fairly simple procedure.
The majority of earlobe repairs take one hour to complete.
Since earlobes do not contain many nerves, pain after earlobe repair is very minimal and is easily controlled with over-the-counter medications.
After surgery, you should avoid any impact or pressure on the lobes, harsh soaps, or excessive sun exposure so that your earlobes can completely heal.
Following earlobe repair surgery, avoid prolonged sun exposure. Too much time in the sun can lead to pigmentation of the incision lines.
Since skin is cut during an earlobe repair and it is considered a surgical procedure, there are some minor risks. Some of the most common risks include infection, bleeding, pain, and scarring.
An ear infection is one of the risks of earlobe repair surgery. This risk is reduced by using sterile equipment and providing patients with very specific after-care instructions.
Due to the fact that an incision is necessary to repair a torn or damaged earlobe, there will be some scarring after an earlobe repair. Fortunately, there are special techniques that can help keep scarring to a minimum. If patients do face scarring, it’s usually a fine line that is barely noticeable.
Yes. Regardless of the reason of why your earlobes have become stretched, an earlobe repair will allow you to wear earrings again once you’ve completely healed. Premier Image offers a complimentary re-piercing of the ear as part of the earlobe repair procedure.
Our staff will be happy to share before and after pictures with you. You can count on us to go into detail when explaining the similarities and differences between your earlobes and those of the patients in the pictures. Pictures will give you realistic expectations and confidence when going into surgery.
After surgery, your ear will not be wrapped in a dressing. You’ll be able to go out in public and nobody should be able to see your sutures unless they look at your ear very closely.
Our surgeons recommend that patients who have undergone an earlobe repair wait at least eight weeks before getting their ears re-pierced. This will help prevent earlobe damage from recurring.
You can shower and wash your hair the day after earlobe repair surgery. Be sure to use common sense while showering and refrain from scrubbing the surgical area. If possible, use a gentle shampoo such as Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo.
Fortunately, patients who undergo earlobe repair will not need to take any time off work. However, they should consider scheduling their surgery toward the end of the week so they can spend the weekend resting and recuperating from the procedure.
In most cases, patients can are asked to visit their surgeon five to seven days after surgery. Your surgeon will also ask that they return a few weeks later so they can make sure proper healing has taken place.
Patients who opt for earlobe repair to achieve more youthful earlobes often pair this procedure with other surgeries such as a facelift to completely rejuvenate their face.
Schedule a Private Earlobe Repair Consultation Today
At Premier Image Cosmetic and Laser Surgery, we are committed to exceptional patient care. If you believe you could benefit from earlobe repair or would like more information on this procedure, we encourage you to schedule a private earlobe repair consultation.