Stretched, torn or gauged earlobes can easily be fixed with a short outpatient procedure known as earlobe repair. Dr. Stephen Weber, a double board certified facial plastic surgeon, regularly performs earlobe repairs at his Denver, CO, office.
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Heavy earrings have a tendency to stretch the earlobe and widen the piercing. People who wear heavy earrings for a prolonged period of time may damage their earlobe. Earlobe repair is a surgical procedure that is performed to repair a stretched piercing and droopy earlobes. The procedure is also performed on earlobes that have a large healed defect as a result of being gauged or overstretched. Patients who have earlobe repair experience no downtime. In four to six weeks, their earlobe heals and can be pierced so earrings can once again be worn. The popularity of earlobe repairs among young men has surged since the military restricted men with gauged earlobes from enlisting.
Earlobe Repair with Dr. Weber
Earlobe repair is a very short procedure, usually between thirty to sixty minutes. Dr. Weber performs the procedure in one of his in-office surgical procedure suites. The first step in the procedure is the administration of a local anesthetic. Once the patient’s ear is numb and they cannot feel any pain, the procedure is completed using the following steps:
- The edges of the torn or stretched earlobe are carefully excised. This is known as freshening the earlobe.
- The tear is meticulously repaired using delicate sutures.
The patient feels no pain or discomfort during the procedure. There is little to no bleeding. Stitches are usually removed five days after the procedure.
One of the greatest aspects of earlobe repair is that there is no downtime associated with the procedure. Patients may leave the office and return to their normal day-to-day activities shortly after their procedure is completed. Many patients are amazed that they can have the procedure during their lunch hour and return to work afterward.
The incisions used to perform earlobe repair heal very nicely. The repaired ear lobe looks normal and natural. In four to six weeks, patients can return to Dr. Weber’s office to have their new earlobe pierced. Should it be necessary, laser resurfacing can be used to smooth irregularities in the incisions. This additional procedure is performed at no charge.
Men and women who have stretched, torn or gauged earlobes are candidates for earlobe repair with Dr. Weber. In most cases, the procedure is performed on healthy patients with no serious medical conditions that could possibly affect skin healing. Patients who smoke are advised to stop doing so before and after their procedure. A requirement for candidacy is a positive mindset and realistic expectations.
An Initial Consultation with Dr. Weber
Patients who are interested in an earlobe procedure attend an initial consultation with Dr. Weber. The consultation covers every aspect of the patient’s condition and the earlobe repair procedure. The consultation consists of the following:
- A medical and surgical history review
- A physical examination in which Dr. Weber takes pictures for comparative purposes
- A discussion regarding goals and expected results
A question and answer session is held at the end of the consultation. During the session, Dr. Weber patiently listens to the patient’s questions and concerns and then answers and addresses them. All of Dr. Weber’s patients are completely educated and informed before making their decision to undergo earlobe repair.
Earlobe Repair Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What type of anesthesia is used? How is it administered?
Dr. Weber uses a local anesthetic to perform earlobe repair. Dr. Weber carefully administers the anesthetic via injection. Patients rarely experience pain or discomfort from the tiny needle prick that is made. After the anesthetic is administered, the patient’s ear becomes numb. It usually takes about five minutes for this to occur.
Is there a risk of developing an ear infection?
There are risks associated with all surgical procedures. An ear infection is one of the risks of an earlobe repair procedure. Dr. Weber reduces risks by using sterile techniques and equipment. He also gives his patients specific information regarding how to take care of their incision after surgery. The chance of developing an ear infection after Dr. Weber performs your procedure is very small.
Will I have a noticeable scar after my surgery?
All surgical incisions form scars. Because Dr. Weber uses special sutures and delicate suturing techniques, the scars that form from his surgical incisions are very tiny and not noticeable. Patients who undergo an earlobe repair will notice their incision after their procedure; however, its visibility will quickly fade and blend with the natural texture and coloring of the skin.
Will my ear be wrapped in a dressing?
Your ear will not be wrapped in a dressing after your surgery. You can go out in public. People will only be able to see your incision if they look closely at your ear.
Is an earlobe repair the same thing as an otoplasty?
Earlobe repair and otoplasty are two different surgical procedures. Earlobe repair is used to correct stretched, torn or gauged earlobes. Otoplasty is used to correct overly large, protruding or asymmetric ears. If you are interested in an otoplasty procedure, you can learn more about it by visiting Dr. Weber’s otoplasty page or contacting his office.
Will my hearing be affected by my procedure?
Absolutely not. Repairing your earlobe will have no effect on your hearing. Your hearing will remain the same after your procedure.
Is there anything I can do after my procedure to maximize my results?
Dr. Weber will give you very specific instructions regarding how to clean and take care of your incision. If you follow Dr. Weber’s instructions, your results will be maximized. You will look and feel great after your incision heals perfectly.
Will I really be able to pierce my ears after my procedure?
You will be able to pierce your ears four to six weeks after your procedure. Your ears should only be pierced by Dr. Weber or one of his staff members. Dr. Weber will discuss this process in detail with you at your initial consultation.
Can I enlist in the military after my procedure?
The military has restricted men with gauged earlobes from enlisting. Men who undergo an earlobe repair with Dr. Weber may enlist and pursue a career in the military. Dr. Weber has successfully performed earlobe repairs on countless men who are now enlisted in the military.
Can I see before and after photos of some of Dr. Weber’s patients who have undergone earlobe repair?
Dr. Weber would be happy to show you before and after pictures of his patients. He will go into great detail when explaining the similarities and differences between your earlobes and the patients in the pictures. You will know exactly what type of results to expect and will feel confident going into your surgery.
What are some of the signs that I need an earlobe repair?
The following are the most common signs that you could benefit from earlobe repair:
- You have stretched piercings and droopy earlobes
- Your earrings constantly fall out or point to the floor
- Your earrings catch on your clothing or pillow
If you have a notch that heals in your torn earlobe, it cannot be repaired without surgery.
How do I arrange my initial consultation with Dr. Weber?
Your initial consultation with Dr. Weber can be easily arranged by contacting his office in Denver, CO, or by visiting his contact page. Dr. Weber looks forward to hearing from you and providing you with a solution to your earlobe problem.
* Each patient is unique and individual results may vary.